Scott Morrison responds to Brittany Higgins rape allegations

Scott Morrison says advice his office first found out about an alleged rape in Parliament House last week will come under the microscope.

The comments follow revelations one of the Prime Minister’s staffers was “mortified” after being informed of an alleged incident involving then-Liberal staffer Brittany Higgins and a colleague.

In shocking text messages obtained by The Australian, a staffer told Ms Higgins in April 2019 – two weeks after the alleged incident – that he had spoken to the Prime Minister’s office.

Mr Morrison on Tuesday told the parliament that his office first heard about the claims on February 12, but he only found out three days later.

“I set out in the parliament this week the timetable of when I am advised my office knew about it,” Mr Morrison said on Friday.

“I have asked the secretary of my department to actually test that advice that I received.”

Mr Morrison said the claims were deeply distressing and he had sought to be as “open and honest” as he could.

“I have told you everything I know about this matter,” he said.

“I will just continue to do that.”

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Earlier on Friday, Labor leader Anthony Albanese said the idea there was a distinction between a senior staff member knowing and Mr Morrison’s office knowing “does not stack up”.

“There are text messages saying that a senior staff member was going to discuss this with the Prime Minister’s chief of staff,” Mr Albanese said.

“It doesn’t pass the pub test.”

Mr Albanese said it was disrespectful to Ms Higgins that there were not “clear answers”.

“Brittany Higgins deserves better than the way that she has been treated,” he said.

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