The Project host Jan Fran has unleashed an explosive attack on Prime Minister Scott Morrison and branded Australia as being ‘full of racists’.
The TV presenter lashed out in the wake of the row about the PM allegedly using a political rival’s Lebanese heritage as a weapon against him in a pre-selection battle.
When Mr Morrison was vying with Michael Towke in 2007 to to be the Liberal candidate in the south Sydney seat of Cook, he was accused of trying to smear Mr Towke by saying he was a Lebanese Muslim.
Now Ms Fran, 36, who is Australian-Lebanese, says the row shows ‘racism is alive and well in politics’.
The Project host Jan Fran has unleashed an explosive attack on Prime Minister Scott Morrison and branded Australia as being ‘full of racists’
The 15-year-old accusations were resurrected last week when dumped Liberal senator Connie Fierravanti-Wells unloaded on the PM in her farewell speech in parliament, reviving the row and calling Mr Morrison a ‘bully and an autocrat’.
It was revealed at the weekend that Mr Towke made a legally-binding statutory declaration in 2016 accusing the PM of ‘racial vilification’ during the pre-selection battle.
Mr Morrison is alleged to have told locals in the constituency that no-one Lebanese would be able to hold the seat after the 2005 Cronulla race riots, and allegedly spread the rumour Mr Towke was Muslim. Mr Towke is a Maronite Catholic.
Mr Towke added at the weekend: ‘I stand by the declarations I asserted in my statutory declaration.
‘Among many unedifying tactics used to unseat me from my preselection victory for Morrison, racial vilification was front and centre and he was directly involved.’
Michael Towke made a legally-binding statutory declaration in 2016 accusing the PM of ‘racial vilification’ during the pre-selection battle
Mr Morrison has strenuously denied all the claims as categorically untrue and has said he would sign a statutory declaration saying just that.
On Sunday Ms Fran took to Instagram and Twitter to hit out in a full-frontal attack on the PM and Australians, in a post that began: ‘Strap in, babes!’
She branded the row almost comical as Lebanese people can tell someone’s religion and their village from their surname.
‘But a lack of nuance is the least of our worries here,’ she wrote, before treating the denied allegation against Mr Morrison as a fact.
The pregnant mum-to-be branded previous visits by PM Scott Morrison to Lebanese Catholic churches in Adelaide and Sydney’s Punchbowl as insincere attempts to win votes
‘Morrison seems to believe that being a Muslim is so terrible a thing he can use it to ruin someone’s good standing. He can use it as a weapon. A smear!
‘And worse than that – it’s effective. We all know what this says about our country and its leadership but I’ll spell it out.
‘We’re full of racists and there are people ready to exploit that.’
The pregnant mum-to-be branded previous visits by the PM to Lebanese Catholic churches in Adelaide and Sydney’s Punchbowl as insincere attempts to win votes.
‘Lemme tell you what ethnic minorities have known since forever in this country.,’ she wrote.
‘Those in power (and it ain’t just Morrison) will use you when it’s politically expedient.
‘The solidarity, appreciation, respect they show is always, ALWAYS conditional. They will turn on a dime.
She added: ‘They’ll come to your church and wax lyrical about the ‘deep appreciation’ they have for your heritage.
‘And then they’ll use that very heritage – the one they so deeply appreciate – to throw you under the bus the second they need to.’
‘The next time politicians come to your church or mosque or community organisation with a camera (or not)…take it with the largest pinch of salt possible.’
The outburst was liked more than 4,000 times on Instagram with many replies agreeing with her.
‘Instead of having representation from our ACTUAL community, he eliminates the competition that is in fact a Lebanese Maronite, then breaks bread with his people,’ wrote one.
‘And because we are looking for any kind of representation, any kind of sign of acceptance… we take it.
‘You cannot be rumoured to be of a certain religion. What even is that??! The better guy didn’t win because he was sabotaged, as with many of us who a rumoured to be Middle Easterners.
‘Just look at my eyebrows honey the rumours are true. I am furious. Thanks for sharing Jan, means so much to give a hoot. A big Middle Eastern honking one!’