A man has collapsed in Brisbane after a 2000-strong crowd marched against Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s policies.
A man collapsed in Brisbane following a march through the city to protest against Tony Abbott and the Queensland government’s “police state” crackdown on bikies.
Men, women and children holding placards gathered at Queens Park in the city on Sunday afternoon to protest against the prime minister’s stance on asylum seekers, climate change and gay marriage, as part of the national March in March demonstrations.
After marching through central Brisbane, a man fell to the ground on George Street and required an ambulance.
Before the march, the loudest jeering from the crowd of about 2000 came when event organiser Matt Donovan, a former Labor candidate, denounced Immigration Minister Scott Morrison’s treatment of asylum seekers.
“No matter how many times you parrot that lie, we will keep reminding you,” he told the crowd.
He also had a line for Queensland Premier Campbell Newman: “our dear leader”.
“I know many of you protesters are here, in fact, to protest the arrogant, despotic, far-right, authoritarian, self-serving, bully-boy government and the police state he has created,” Mr Donovan said.
He called Queensland Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie an egomaniac for introducing the Vicious Lawless Association Disestablishment (VLAD) laws, aimed at the state’s bikies.
“I should say VLAD the conveyancer,” Mr Donovan said in reference to Mr Bleijie’s former job.
Queensland Labor frontbencher MP Jo-Ann Miller told the crowd Mr Newman’s Liberal National Party government was resembling that of Joh Bjelke-Petersen as it curtailed civil liberties “every single day”.
Queensland Greens Senator Larissa Waters denounced the Abbott government for seeking to repeal a section of the Racial Discrimination Act that makes it illegal to insult someone on the grounds of race or ethnicity.
“In Tony Abbott’s world, Andrew Bolt is the minister for indigenous affairs … but only if they’re black enough for his determination,” she said of the controversial News Corp Australia columnist.
The act was used to prosecute Mr Bolt over his article saying some “fair-skinned Aboriginals” chose to identify as Aboriginal for personal gain.