Queensland Senator Matt Canavan has ripped into Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk saying her claims of a shortage in hotel quarantine vacancies were nothing more than a media stunt.

It comes after the Palaszczuk Government ignored its own health protocols and granted a special exemption to allow dozens of NRL players’ wives, girlfriends, kids and officials to jet into Brisbane yesterday.

They will hotel quarantine for 14 days despite the premier’s earlier insistence hotels were full.

“There are plenty of hotels in Queensland, plenty of vacant hotels on the Gold Coast and Cairns because of the border closures that could be used,” Mr Canavan told Sky News Australia.

“The reason the Premier did this last week was so that she could set up a media strategy to announce the Toowoomba quarantine centre which she had no federal government support for.

“You could see it; they leaked it to the media that there was a shortage, they announced the ban – then the next day the suddenly appeared in Townsville with a lot of big yellow things moving dirt behind them.

“It was a complete and utter concocted theatre that we’re used to from the Queensland government but they’re playing with real Queenslanders lives.”

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