Why the major parties rejected ICAC: donations

Like many Australians, I’m dismayed that the Labor, National and Liberal parties joined forces to vote down a Greens motion to form a national ICAC last week.

Corruption doesn’t stop at NSW borders. Our federal politicians should be subject to the same scrutiny that has exposed so many abuses of public trust in NSW. How many more Eddie Obeids, Chris Hartchers and Ian MacDonalds are out there?

A quick look at the donations made to the major parties in 2012 reveals a disturbing trend.

Over $100,000 was donated to the Labor Party by mining magnates Chevron and Santos, over $20,000 was donated to the Nationals by the NSW Minerals Council and Phillip Morris tobacco, and $11,000 was donated to the Liberals by the Property Council of Australia.

I doubt that these donations come without expectation.

We need to break the links between large corporate donations and political lobbying and establishing an independent federal body to investigate allegations of corruption would be a good start.

If Labor and the Abbott government want to restore public confidence in our national parliament, they need to support the Greens motion to urgently set up a federal ICAC.

Tamara Smith, Bangalow

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