Labor slams Turnbull’s NBN “broken promises”


news The Labor Party has hit out at what it calls Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s “broken promises” over the NBN rollout and listed a number of perceived “stuff-ups” during his first year of office.

In a statement from Michelle Rowland MP, the Opposition said that after “talking up a big game on broadband delivery”, Turnbull has left Australians “bitterly disappointed”.

To back up its strong language, Rowland cited Turnbull’s previous commitment that the NBN would be delivered in 2016, while the NBN’s latest Corporate Plan said the timeframe has extended to 2020.

Further, it will “only” be by June next year that nearly half of Australians will be able to order an NBN service.

“Turnbull promised the maximum funding of his second-rate NBN would be $29.5 billion. The cost has nearly doubled and blown out to $54 billion,” Rowland continued, adding that while the Coalition Government had promised Australians faster broadband, Australia’s Internet speeds have actually dropped from 30th to 60th globally.

Labor also raised the issue that more Australians will now be on the “slower, copper-reliant fibre-to-the-node option rather than HFC”.

“Malcolm Turnbull is not the Prime Minister he promised he would be and is not delivering the NBN he promised he would,” said the MP.

She further accused the Prime Minister of promoting “Labor’s NBN satellites” and claiming credit for them, despite previously labelling them “a Rolls-Royce solution” and “wasteful spending”.

Moving onto issues outside the NBN, Labor said Turnbull’s “mismanagement” of the Mobile Black Spot Programme has been “disastrous”.

“A damning Audit Office report found that it hasn’t delivered valued for money with $28 million being spent on mobile base stations that barely benefit consumers,” the statement said.

Accusing the Prime Minister of “continuing to neglect rural and regional communities”, Labor said: “The Coalition remains committed to a record roll-out of copper and a plan to abolish Universal Wholesale Pricing. These are policies that will particularly hurt households and businesses outside our major cities.”

“It’s clear Malcolm Turnbull is incapable of delivering on his promises. The lived experience of consumers and their disappointment speaks for itself,” the statement concluded.

Image credit: Office of Malcolm Turnbull