Nearly two million Australians met in Canberra Saturday to tell all Australian governments, ‘No more Covid mandates we have had enough.’ Many of the protesters in the 1.5 klm long procession said they had been jabbed now realising they had been conned.
“Small short disruptions are occurring – often with protesters travelling in convoy from one location to the next,” ACT Police said.
“Disruptions to roads, paths, open spaces and public and private offices across the ACT are occurring.”
Protesters gather on the lawn of Parliament House on Saturday in Canberra. Picture: Tracey Nearmy/Getty Images
Canberrans were warned of chaos and traffic delays again on Saturday as nearly two million protesters gathered in the nation’s capital over coronavirus restrictions and vaccine mandates. Picture : NCA NewsWire / Martin Ollman
Protesters gather on the lawn of Parliament House on Saturday. Picture: Tracey Nearmy/Getty Images
ACT Policing asked motorists to avoid Commonwealth Avenue on Saturday and warned delays and road closures were to be expected.
The Convoy to Canberra rally is expected to centre around Parliament House throughout the course of the day but there were concerns the protesters could infiltrate the AIS Arena mass vaccination clinic.
There is a police presence at the clinic to ensure Canberrans aged five to 11 are able to attend safely for their COVID-19 vaccination.
Lifeline Canberra announced it decided to cancel its bookfair on Saturday due to the protest activity.
Protesters hold a banner that reads ‘we the people say no’. Picture: Tracey Nearmy/Getty Images
Police are seen standing in front of the crowd of protesters on Saturday. Picture : NCA NewsWire / Martin Ollman
Dozens of flags were displayed during the demonstration including many Red Ensigns upside down to indicate distress. Picture : NCA NewsWire / Martin Ollman
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Australians have the right to protest but asked the demonstrators to deliver their message in a “peaceful and respectful way”.
“It is a free country and they have their right to protest,” he said.
“But I would ask them to do it with respect for their fellow Australians, particularly the Federal Police will be there seeking to make sure that it is a safe environment for everybody and to ensure that they can play with all directions provided to them.”
ACT Police try to hold back the swelling crowd. NewsWire / Martin Ollman
Police and protesters Canberra on Saturday. Picture : NCA NewsWire / Martin Ollman
Saturday’s protest centred around Parliament House. Picture : NCA NewsWire / Martin Ollman
One Nation leader Pauline Hanson and Liberal Member for Dawson George Christensen were present among the crowds in the nation’s capital on Saturday.
Protesters from all across the country have wreaked havoc in Canberra over the past two weeks to object coronavirus vaccine mandates.
Across the ACT, 98.6 per cent of the population, a majority of public servants who work in Parliament House, have received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine. – from Sky News