• Hodgman trying to sweep scandal under the carpet
• Exposed troll account interacted with other staff
• Implausible that just one staff member was involved
Premier Will Hodgman can’t sweep the use of fake troll social media accounts by his office under the carpet.
Deputy Labor Leader Michelle O’Byrne said the matter warrants a full investigation.
“The Premier has tried to make one staff member the scapegoat for a practice that is clearly more widespread,” Ms O’Byrne said.
“It’s is completely implausible and unbelievable that just one member of Will Hodgman’s staff was aware of the fake accounts.
“There is clear evidence of another member of the Premier’s staff interacting with the fake account.
“The fake accounts were prolific on social media. It’s not plausible that the practice wasn’t discussed in the Premier’s office.
“There’s been speculation about a link between the Premier’s office and fake social media accounts for months. How can it be that the Premier or his Chief of Staff didn’t investigate this earlier?
“Prominent troll accounts have recently disappeared.
“A fake account called “Brent Smith” relentlessly trolled anti-pokies pubs and supporters.
“The profile left poor reviews on businesses who spoke out in support of removing pokies from pubs and clubs.
“If it’s confirmed that a Government employee used a fake profile on social media to falsely run down Tasmanian businesses it’s an absolute disgrace.
“This matter warrants a full, independent investigation.
“The Premier can’t just sweep this under the carpet.”