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Australian PM slams predecessor for being ‘too drunk’

IANS | Canberra |

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull on Friday slammed his predecessor Tony Abbott for missing parliament once because he had been “too drunk”.

Abbott had revealed that he failed to make a key vote in 2009 after drinking too much wine the night before, the BBC reported.

Turnbull, then opposition leader, described the incident as unacceptable.

“There was nothing we could do,” the Prime Minister told a radio station.

“As Tony acknowledged, the whips (fellow MPs) tried to rouse him to get him down into the chamber to vote, but they were unable to move him.”

“I was disappointed. I cannot remember anyone else missing a vote because they were too drunk to get into the chamber, but the fact is that Tony has confessed up to it, he knows it was an error or whatever,” Turnbull added.

Abbott toppled Turnbull for the Liberal Party leadership later in 2009, only for Turnbull to reclaim it in 2015, when Abbott was Prime Minister.

Wayne Swan, who was government treasurer in 2009, criticised Abbott following his disclosure.

“Of course, now we know the truth — he slept through some of the most important votes in the Australian parliament in over 50 or 60 years.”