SUSSAN Ley believes the new Prime Minister will tackle the drought with the same method that he used to pursue boats tied to people smuggling.
The member for Farrer cited Scott Morrison’s role as Immigration Minister with Operation Sovereign Borders as a guide for how the Sydneysider would understand the hardship of farmers.
“I come back to his Operation Sovereign Borders,” Ms Ley said.
“He relies on people to critically be his ears and eyes on the ground and I think that’s a very important skill for a prime minister.
“You can’t be everywhere and you can’t hear every argument, so you have to have people who can, who can relay that back to you, so you have the best possible intelligence.”
Ms Ley was speaking on Monday after addressing a rally in Deniliquin which drew 500 irrigators seeking rapid water allocations to prevent winter crops dying.
The event saw a motion passed urging the federal and NSW governments to take immediate steps to make an early allocation available for Murray Valley irrigators.
A motion calling on the PM to visit the southern Riverina was also endorsed.
Ms Ley said she would reflect the passion of farmers in her talks with Mr Morrison and federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud.
“The angrier you get...the easier it is for me,” Ms Ley told the rally.
“The more noise you make the more fight I can have for you.”
NSW member for Murray Austin Evans spoke of suspending water-sharing rules.
He said if such rules were suspended it would allow 140 gigalitres to flow to farmers.
Mr Evans said he had told NSW Environment Minister Gabrielle Upton that the extra water she announced on Sunday for irrigators would make little difference.
“(I) said “I appreciate the effort you’ve made, the sentiment you’ve put, but the reality is A) that’s not much water and B) the way that you’ve done means that most people won’t be able to access it anyway because they won’t be able to afford to,” Mr Evans told the rally.
Rally organiser Shelley Scoullar, of the Speak Up lobby group for farming, was delighted with the turnout.
Other speakers included Yarrawonga irrigator Chris Brooks, Edward River mayor Norm Brennan and heads of Murray Irrigation and Southern Riverina Irrigators.
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