The long-overdue resignation of the ministry by Bridget McKenzie leaves unanswered questions about the Sports Rorts scandal and does not address underlying integrity issues with the Morrison Government, according to the Greens.
Co-deputy leader and spokesperson on democracy Senator Larissa Waters and spokesperson on sport Senator Janet Rice said the Prime Minister will try and draw a line under this sports rorts scandal after Bridget McKenzie’s resignation but the announcement today does not stop the rot.
Quotes attributable to Senator Larissa Waters:
“Channel 10 News raised serious allegations on Friday about the Prime Minister’s office being directly involved in this scandal. Scott Morrison should make a statement to parliament this week clarifying the exact role his office played in bribes going to marginal seats and how the Prime Minister was involved.
“Sports Rorts is only the latest of a long line of scandals involving government ministers, including multiple conflicts of interest surrounding Angus Taylor and the post-parliament employment of Christopher Pyne and Julie Bishop in industries they were previously responsible for regulating.
“On top of the Prime Minister’s list of business for this week should be restoring trust in the government and his ministers.
“My bill establishing an independent federal corruption watchdog passed the Senate in September last year, the Prime Minister should bring on a vote for the bill as first order of business in the lower house this Wednesday.
“The community is growing tired of witnessing behaviour from politicians that shows they are serving their own self-interest and benefit donors to their party. It’s time to clean up politics and strengthen our democracy so it works for everyone,” she said.
Quotes attributable to Senator Janet Rice:
“The idea that political considerations were not a determining factor when deciding what clubs got funding is farcical.
“Australians take pride in a sporting culture that aims to play fair, from school competitions to social sport, right up to our elite national teams, so why won’t the Prime Minister and his ministers do the same? The same rules should apply to them.
“Minister McKenzie’s resignation does not change the result: we still have a government up to their neck in dishonesty and scandals, and there are still hundreds of deserving clubs across Australia who were robbed as the government used sports grants to buy and cheat their way back into government.
“The Prime Minister should do the right thing and make sure every community that met Sport Australia’s independent criteria for funding receives support for their local sports projects, regardless of their electorate.
“This is the level playing field the community expects: fix the problem, hold those responsible to account, and ensure this porkbarrelling never happens again.”