AC for former Premier

Daniel Andrews announcing his departure as Premier in September 2023. Photo by Diego Fedele / AAP.

by Cam Lucadou-Wells

Nine months after retiring from politics, former Premier Daniel Andrews has been named as a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC).

The Mulgrave MP for more than 20 years was among six to receive the highest possible citation in the King’s Birthday Honours List.

Mr Andrews was awarded for “eminent service to the people and Parliament of Victoria, to public health, to policy and regulatory reform, and to infrastructure development”.

In a statement, Mr Andrews said that “I’m honoured to have been nominated for this award and grateful to every Victorian who contributed to some of our state’s best times and who worked so hard to see us through our most challenging”.

“I thank the Victorian community for their support for me and my team in leading our state for nine years.

“That remains the greatest honour of my life.”

Mr Andrews has largely kept out of the spotlight since his snap-retirement as Premier in September.

His near-decade at the helm was regarded to have left a vast legacy of mass level-crossing removals, transport projects such as Suburban Rail Loop and Metro Rail Tunnel, and social reforms.

On the other hand, he’s being criticized for saddling Victoria with a mountain of debt as well as project blowouts, the cancelled Commonwealth Games and several inquiries.

Victoria’s Covid-19 lockdowns, considered among the lengthiest in the world, also generated a lot of debate.

Other AC recipients included two other Labor political leaders – the recently-retired WA Premier Mark McGowan and former Hotham MP Simon Crean.