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PM’s anti-corruption shift set to fail if he continues to back toothless model

Media Release
Lee Rhiannon 12 Dec 2017

Now Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has opened the door to a national anti-corruption body he should engage with the National Integrity Committee (NIC) set up last month to advise policy makers on the best model. 

Commenting on the Prime Minister’s policy shift the Greens democracy spokesperson, Senator Lee Rhiannon said, “The Prime Minister will undermine his own announcement that he is considering a national anti-corruption body if he continues to advocate for a model similar to the Victorian IBAC.

“The IBAC itself has acknowledged that it is unable to investigate serious allegations because it lacks legislative teeth.

“With polling consistently showing that about 80 per cent of Australians recognise that there is corruption at a federal level the Prime Minister would be in dangerous territory if he thought he could get away with setting up a weak and restricted oversight body.

“I strongly urge the Prime Minister to follow the advice of the National Integrity Committee. This body can help remove the roadblocks that to date have stopped the formation of a federal corruption watchdog. 

“Last month I congratulated The Australia Institute for its work in helping to pull together an impressive list of retired judges, experts and corruption fighters to form the NIC. 

“Mr Turnbull should immediately acquaint himself with the National Integrity Committee’s design principles drawn up to advise policy makers on the best model for a federal anti-corruption watchdog. 

“A priority for the PM should be to meet with the Committee to advance this work.

“It would be political suicide if the PM backs a toothless national anti-corruption body,” Senator Rhiannon said.

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