Mr McGowan displayed the spear, which was part of a Welcome to Country, as he arrived at the press conference for the official opening of BHP’s South Flank iron ore mine in the Pilbara.
“Any journalists that play up, any journalists that displease me,” he quipped while approaching a microphone, presenting the spear.
“I will be bringing this to every presser. And I’ll be bringing it to meetings with the NSW Premier as well.”
Premier Mark McGowan is given a ‘punishment stick’ by traditional owners at at BHP South Flank iron ore mine on Thursday. Picture by: Rebecca Le May
The comments, which were met by laughter from journalists, continued at the end of the press conference, with Mr McGowan turning the attention to NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet.
“Where’s my spear? Give me back my spear,” he said at the conclusion of the press conference.
The banter continued with Mr McGowan asking, “I’m serious, anyone wanna take me on? Dom Perrttoet, where’s Dom Perrottet when I need him?”
The peculiar series of events follows a stoush between the two Premiers over the GST, with Mr McGowan on Wednesday taking to Facebook to complain about the “whinging” Sydney Liberals.
Western Australian Premier Mark McGowan jokingly suggested his New South Wales counterpart should “take me on” while posing with a spear
“If it wasn’t for the GST deal we fought so hard to secure, WA would get back barely 33 cents on the dollar this year, and even less in years to come,” Mr McGowan wrote.
“No other State has ever had its share drop to anywhere near the levels that WA has seen, but more importantly, none are worse off under the revised deal.
“I’m sick of the Sydney Liberals whinging about it. West Aussies shouldn’t have to pay for their budget mismanagement.”
Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Thursday was forced to step in, declaring the GST allocation would not change amid the escalating row between the two states.
McGowan’s Indigenous spear moment could see him ‘attacked by left’
“The GST is not changing,” Mr Morrison said.
“(Mr Perrottet’s) at liberty to make whatever comments he likes as the NSW Premier.
“But the Commonwealth’s position is rock solid, very clear. I authored the deal, I inked the deal, I’ll keep the deal.”
Changes were made to the system in 2018 whereby no state would receive less than 70 cents in a bid to improve Western Australia’s share which sat at about 30 cents.
Mr Perrottet has argued the changes risk placing a heavy financial burden on NSW and Victoria while Western Australia’s economy continues to boom.
McGowan calls out Perottet over GST comments
But Mr McGowan said NSW has poorly managed its finances and should not expect Western Australia to bail them out.  
“They’ve made mistakes, terrible mistakes with COVID, with financial management,” the Premier said.
“They shouldn’t look to Western Australia to bail them out any more than we currently are.”

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