Those who tuned into the ABC’s Q&A program on September 19 would have witnessed host Tony Jones issue an embarrassing correction regarding his claim that the firearm used in the Sydney Siege was obtained via the proper channels. On the September 12 program which featured Victorian Nationals Senator Bridget McKenzie, Mr Jones incorrectly portrayed the perpetrator Man Horan Monis as being a licensed firearm owner who obtained the sawn-off shotgun used in the December 2014 incident legitimately.
As the SSAA Legislative Action (SSAA-LA) department promptly pointed out, Monis never held a firearms licence and did not obtain the unregistered, illegally modified firearm through the proper process. We requested that the ABC investigate the misleading statement and also submitted an official complaint.
Issuing the correction at the tail-end of the program, Mr Jones admitted that the ABC had fact-checked the comment, declaring that “Monis was never a registered gun owner; he probably acquired that gun from the so-called grey market.” While it is a far cry from an apology to the one million licensed firearm owners who were unfairly linked to the terrorist incident, the SSAA is glad Mr Jones has been forced to correct the comment.