Senators demand inquiry into ABC's climate protest coverage

Western Australian Liberal Senators are calling for a Senate Inquiry into the ABC's actions and alleged collusion during a recent climate protest outside Woodside CEO Meg O’Neill's home.

Senators demand inquiry into ABC's climate protest coverage
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Western Australian Liberal Senators are calling for an inquiry into the ABC’s coverage of a climate protest outside the house of Woodside chief executive Meg O’Neill.

The broadcaster’s Four Corners program has come under huge scrutiny after its film crew turned up outside O’Neill’s home at 6.45am last week to film a home invasion.

The ABC claimed they had received a news tip but had no idea where they were going or what they would be filming when they arrived at O’Neill’s home.

They also claimed they had not colluded with climate protestors and that they had remained on public property throughout the protest.

But a photograph emerged on Sunday of ABC staff standing on O’Neill’s driveway as they filmed protesters attempting to enter her Perth home.

The ABC sent a letter of regret to Ms O’Neill, but not an apology.

Western Australian Liberal Senators, led by Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Senate Michaelia Cash, Linda Reynolds, and Dean Smith, are now demanding a Senate Inquiry into the ABC’s conduct.

They said an inquiry would examine “the ABC’s actions in attending the protest”, any “engagement between the ABC and the protestors prior to the incident” as well as any “collusion between the ABC and the protestors”.

The inquiry, if established by the Senate, would also probe the “explanations provided by the ABC for its attendance at the incident and the extent to which those explanations are accurate”.

Western Australia Labor Premier Roger Cook has already denounced the incident and slammed the ABC’s conduct as “completely unacceptable”.

He said the film crew’s actions “should be condemned by everyone, including the ABC”.

Two of the protesters have appeared in a Perth court charged with conspiring to commit an indictable offence.

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  • By Avi Yemini

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