It seems to be the week for former Prime Ministers to comeback into the spotlight. While Julia Gilliard will be talking to Ray Martin on Nine next week, John Howard has made the decision to open up with Seven.
For seven years he’s kept his silence. For seven years he’s kept his most personal views secret. Now John Winston Howard is unloading. He doesn’t have to hold back anymore. Australia’s second longest serving Prime Minister in history has a lot to say and a lot to reveal. So much so, that he’s given unprecedented access to Sunday Night in a series of explosive interviews.
The 14-year-old bowser boy at his dad’s service station who grew up to be one of the nation’s greatest statesmen, doesn’t duck one question or evade giving an answer. This is the leader who went to Bali in the aftermath of the terrorist bombing, was in Washington, D.C. when the Twin Towers fell, and who took us to war in Afghanistan and Iraq. He brought in gun control and the GST, steered the country to an economic boom….and was then voted out of office in a landslide election defeat that even cost him his seat in parliament.
While historians will pour over his every word, everyday Australians will be fascinated about his views on Costello, Gillard, Rudd, Bush, Thatcher and current Prime Minister Tony Abbott. He details the secret deals and political horse-trading not revealed previously. Howard also opens up like never before on his darkest days, when his father died and his wife Janette broke the news she had cervical cancer.
Love him or loathe him you have to watch this extraordinary TV event, if only to hear him say, “I made a mistake” and “I lost my nerve” at a crucial point in the country’s history.
John Howard now believes what he has to say, after those seven years of silence, will correct a number of falsehoods about him and the actions of the government’s he led. Even his firm views on cigarette smoking will surprise you. It’s a rare opportunity to watch history being made.
Sunday Night guest reporter Janet Albrechtsen, a columnist in The Australian, conducted four interviews with Howard over several weeks.
This SUNDAY NIGHT Special Event hosted by Chris Bath airs on Sunday, September 21 on Channel Seven at 8pm.