Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced a delay of Parliament’s opening (New Indian Express). This announcement came as a response to the spread of COVID-19 in Australia’s two most populous states, Victoria and New South Wales (Reuters). Morrison asked the speaker of Parliament to cancel the two-week session that started on August 4th (Reuters). Morrison stated in a written response, “The government cannot ignore the risk to parliamentarians, their staff, the staff within the parliament and the broader community” (Reuters). The next parliamentary sitting will begin on August 24th (New Indian Express).
Victoria and New South Wales reported 217 and 15 new cases, respectively (Reuters). On July 9th, Victoria placed around five million people in lockdown for six weeks due to the growing number of COVID-19 cases (Reuters). Morrison described the states’ ongoing situations as “very concerning” (New Indian Express). He spoke further and reaffirmed his hope in the health officials’ goal of flattening the curve (New Indian Express).