In the second week of the Federal Election campaign, we finally saw two fierce political rivals battle it out over the nation’s high-speed broadband future, as the NBN Co blows out costs while takes flak from contractors rolling out the service, and Malcolm Turnbull ignores the costs altogether.
Turnbull and Albanese this week sat down on the ABC’s Lateline program to do battle over the nation’s high-speed future, at the start of a week in which nobody would end covered in glory.
The Government kept kicking the Coalition and its alleged allegiance to Rupert Murdoch’s Foxtel interests, saying that the reason its FTTN network is going to be slower is to protect the ailing Foxtel business model. Let’s just fact-check that one, shall we?
Meanwhile, leaks over the progress of the Government’s National Broadband Network kept the company at the centre of the roll-out on the back foot this week. There was first the report that the company would miss its roll-out target by a significant margin, before this afternoon’s news broke that the cost of the network has just blown out by $5 billion thanks to ongoing contractor dramas. NBN Co is meanwhile taking flak from Leighton Contractors over the way the NBN is being deployed around the nation.
Costs don’t seem to concern Turnbull all that much, saying this week that the Coalition has provided enough information about the plan that it doesn’t need to be formally costed by Treasury. This from the same guy who spent three years screaming blue murder for a cost-benefit analysis.
How do you think the NBN is being perceived in the lead-up to the election?