EXCLUSIVE: Meet the TV news icon so incensed by ‘dictator’ Daniel Andrews’ bungled handling of the COVID-19 crisis he’s considering a tilt at politics to rid Victoria of his ‘totalitarian rule’
- Television news veteran George Donikian is behind a push to oust the premier
- Donikian has lashed out at Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews in a video tirade
- Victorian businesses have thrown support behind Donikian’s ideas for the future
- Donikian likened Premier Daniel Andrews’ leadership to a ‘modern-day Stalin’
- His move into politics has been encouraged by fed-up Victorians in lockdown
Television news veteran George Donikian has revealed he is considering a move into politics to save Victorians from ‘totalitarian rule’.
Donikian has told Daily Mail Australia he is investigating his opportunities after being inundated with support for his recent views on Victoria’s COVID-19 crisis.
‘I’ve always had an intense interest in politics,’ Donikian told Daily Mail Australia on Thursday. ‘I feel I could make a real contribution to the community.’
TV news veteran George Donikian is considering a move into politics after becoming fed up with the state of Victoria
Daniel Andrews has come under fire for attempting to string out his emergency powers for another year
Police question a man on the streets of Melbourne during Stage Four lockdown
The move comes a day after anti-lockdown walkers were doused with pepper spray and struggled with cops as community frustration with Melbourne’s draconian Stage 4 restrictions reached boiling point.
Just hours earlier, the 68-year old news icon had delivered another scathing attack on Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews.
In an eight-minute video, Donikian claimed Victorians were living under ‘totalitarian rule’ and likened the premier’s leadership to a ‘modern-day Stalin’.
Victoria recorded 23 deaths and 113 new coronavirus cases on Thursday – the lowest number of new cases for weeks.
Donikian, who has appeared on three different networks since 1980, doubled down on his views on Thursday where he took aim at Opposition Leader Michael O’Brien.
‘There needs to be a stronger opposition in Victoria and a stronger opposition leader,’ he told Daily Mail Australia.
‘Currently the opposition is non-existent and Michael O’Brien is like Casper the Angry Ghost. He’s never seen. If there is such a State of Emergency, then Daniel Andrews must invoke a unity cabinet or reign in his demands.’
George Donikian has been encouraged to enter politics amid Victoria’s COVID crisis
Donikian said he had been encouraged to enter politics by Victorian business leaders and large sections of the community.
He has also gained a following on social media where angry Victorians have pushed him to throw his hat into the political ring.
‘We need a smart, wise, educated leader with compassion,’ one woman posted online.
‘Finally someone is saying the truth,’ another wrote. ‘Please become our prime minister and fix this mess.’
A movement within Victoria to elevate Donikian from the hosting chair onto the political hot seat follows a series of scathing editorials delivered by the newsman over the past few weeks.
On Wednesday, Donikian attacked the Victorian premier’s plans to extend the state’s emergency status for a further 12 months.
‘Victoria’s deep dark hole is about to get deeper. Victoria is cut off from the rest of the country. And while the rest of the country continues to emerge from their hiatus, we remain a leper colony,’ Donikian said.
Victorian opposition leader Michael O’Brien has been compared by George Donikian to Casper the Angry Ghost
George Donikian has gained support from sections of the Victorian community fed up with lockdown restrictions
Television icon George Donikian says Premier Daniel Andrews has blood on his hands
Donikian, who fronts online video news website The Informer, slammed the premier’s handling of Victoria’s COVID crisis and claimed history would condemn Mr Andrews.
‘The destruction of families and relationships because of domestic violence and the homelessness it is creating; the destruction of Victoria for our future generations; the pending economic disaster we now face; the dismantling of the sacrifice past generations of Victorians have made toward building Victoria – gone,’ Donikian said.
‘As sad as the 400 plus lives COVID has taken, it is minuscule compared to lives lost to suicide because of the uncertainty and helplessness Victorians are facing and the psychological decimation it has created.’
Donikian claimed the state’s coronavirus emergency was an ‘SOS’ and urged Prime Minister Scott Morrison to help.
‘It is inexcusable by the prime minister to ignore Victoria’s plight and fate. Because by doing so is not only signing Victoria’s death warrant but the entire country,’ Donikian said.
‘Scott Morrison cannot sit by and watch the destruction of Victoria continue. He can no longer tinker around the edges. And he cannot continue to watch the destruction of Victorian lives go on.
‘Prime minister, Victoria needs your help.’
Veteran news presenter George Donikian has called for Victoria to become a territory and placed under Commonwealth control
Police and soldiers patrol the streets of Melbourne under new stage four lockdown conditions
Premier Daniel Andrews’ handling of the coronavirus outbreaks within the state’s aged care network has been condemned
COVIDiot Eve Black would have been jailed under tough laws proposed by veteran news presenter George Donikian
The World According To George
Jail anti-mask protesters and those that fail to self isolate
Remove stage-four restrictions and allow businesses to re-open
Make Victoria a territory under control by the Commonwealth Government
Remove the entire Victorian government and bring on a royal commission into the handling of the COVID crisis
Donikian caught the attention of Victorians last month when he slammed Mr Andrews in an opening salvo.
‘The premier has on his plate a bit of a kale pache – a stew. And it’s one made from boiled cow or sheep parts. And that’s what Victorians have been served and I’ve got to tell you, it’s not a very tasty dish,’ he said at the time.
‘Victorians have fallen victim to a collective stupidity and we will have to endure a painful legacy because of it,’ he said.
Donikian went onto list a series of blunders he placed at the feet of the Andrews Government.
‘We were told that COVID was an old persons disease, yet the state government failed to safeguard our most frail in our aged care unit because of a lack of foresight and clear mismanagement,’ he said.
Donikian hit out at the premier for lifting the initial restrictions that began in March too early.
‘Hey, that was a major bungle. Then of course there was the inept quarantining of overseas travellers – another disaster and this one with quite serious implications,’ he said.
Police in Victoria have been putting on a show of force throughout the Stage 4 lockdown
Police threaten to pepper spray walkers in Dandenong on Wednesday
Police have been criticised for heavy handed tactics throughout Victoria’s COVID disaster
He further criticised the government’s handling of the Black Lives Matter protest, the ‘Cedar Meats fiasco’, housing commission lockdown and allowing infected people to leave their homes.
The television presenter saved specific criticism for Victorian Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton.
Donikian attacked Mr Sutton for giving mixed messages on the wearing on masks, which went from ‘not required’ to ‘mandatory’.
‘Premier Andrews need not only to sack (Health Minister Jenny) Mikakos, (Housing Minister Richard) Wynne and Sutton, but he also needs to seek out the advice of experts – people who can properly steer a course that we can all follow,’ he said.
Donikian conceded Victoria’s COVID death toll was unacceptable, but claimed the stage-four restrictions threatened to do even greater harm.
Donikian claimed the people had spoken.
‘Victorians have lost faith in you and your government,’ he told the premier.
George Donikian is a highly respected news anchor who has been a journalist since 1975
George Donikian has called on the Victorian Government to be scrapped and handed back to the Commonwealth