All three Federal Court judges came down in favour of the Australian Government and Immigration Minister Alex Hawke’s ruling that to allow him to stay in the country posed a threat to public health.
Mr Hawke’s reasoning was, he believed, that the presence of Djokovic could spark “anti-vaccine” sentiment and “civil unrest.” The judges agreed.
Chief Justice Allsop said the three judges had unanimously ruled to uphold the government’s cancellation of Djokovic’s visa and he said it was not “part of the function of the court” to decide upon “the merits or wisdom” of Immigration Minister Alex Hawke’s decision to cancel Djokovic’s visa.
He added the court “was not in a position to deliver reasons today” but further reasoning on the court’s decision will be published “at a later date.”
The court also ordered that Djokovic pay the government’s legal costs for the hearing.
Djokovic issued a brief statement following the decision:
“I would like to make a brief statement to address the outcomes of today’s Court hearing. I will now be taking some time to rest and to recuperate, before making any further comments beyond this.
“I am extremely disappointed with the Court ruling to dismiss my application for judicial review of the Minister’s decision to cancel my visa, which means I cannot stay in Australia and participate in the Australian Open.
“I respect the Court’s ruling and I will cooperate with the relevant authorities in relation to my departure from the country.
“I am uncomfortable that the focus of the past weeks has been on me and I hope that we can all now focus on the game and tournament I love. I would like to wish the players, tournament officials, staff, volunteers and fans all the best for the tournament.
“Finally, I would like to thank my family, friends, team, supporters, fans and my fellow Serbians for your continued support. You have all been a great source of strength to me.”