Wednesday, 28 October 2020
Commonwealth Integrity Commission
The scandals surrounding the Morrison government are unfolding on a daily basis. Seriously, the list is endless, and it is greatly concerning. It gives further impetus to the establishment of a national integrity watchdog—a watchdog with teeth, an independent commission against corruption.
This is made even more vital when we see the Morrison government cutting funding—almost 20 per cent in real terms—to its own National Audit Office. This government is certainly averse to scrutiny. Why? You just need to look at the dodgy deals, the rorts, the jobs for mates and the misuse of taxpayer funds. Dodgy land deals by government departments to favour Liberal Party donors, like the $30 million purchase of land at the Western Sydney airport that is valued at one-tenth of that amount; illegal use of taxpayers' money for the clear purpose of Liberal Party election campaigning; the big stack of over 60 party friends appointed to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal; the CEO of Australia Post's purchase of $20,000 in Cartier watches using the public purse; the energy and emissions minister's forged document used to attack the mayor of Sydney. And who could forget sports rorts, and the Victorian Liberal Party with racist messages denigrating members of the Indian community and rorting of taxpayer funds for political purposes? What other rorts is this government hiding? We don't know, because this government is doing its very best to shield unacceptable behaviour from the public.
Two years ago the Morrison government committed to establishing a Commonwealth Integrity Commission. Now they're hiding behind COVID is a reason not to. But the government still found time to establish a Higher Education Integrity Unit to investigate students they thought might be cheating. They found time to implement robodebt, and they found time to take a holiday to Hawaii while the country was on fire.
We need a government that's not afraid to be put under the microscope. This is what the people of my electorate of Corangamite expect. This is what the people of Australia expect. The Morrison government needs to understand that it doesn't matter how good the marketing campaign is; corruption has no place in our country.