Premier blasts ‘irresponsible’ protest

Sky News: Premier blasts ‘irresponsible’ protest. Thursday March 20, 2014

The Victorian premier has blasted a group of ‘over the top’ East West Link protesters who surrounded his car.

Footage from an impromptu rally against the proposed road tunnel in Melbourne on Wednesday shows protesters surrounding a white car, waving placards and blocking its path.

The protesters say a member of their group had to be taken to hospital with a possible fracture after the car carrying Premier Denis Napthine ran over his foot.

Dr Napthine said he was attending a government department function when he was approached.

‘These people were over the top, they were irresponsible, they were creating danger on the road,’ he said on Thursday.

‘I think the behaviour was totally and utterly unacceptable.’

Dr Napthine said Victorians had a right to protest, but within the law.

The premier said he did not feel threatened and did not believe his security arrangements needed reviewing.

‘I feel sorry for those police officers that they were put in that situation by the absolutely disgraceful behaviour of a small group of rabble-rousing professional protesters,’ he said.

Dr Napthine said police could in future have powers to ask protesters to move on if they are obstructing others, once the laws are proclaimed.

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