28 March 2011

Tainted probe at Bimberi

| johnboy
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The Canberra Times is running hard with more Liberal dudgeon over the low level inquiry into the running of the Bimberi youth detention centre.

A director of the Department of Housing and Community Services was present at a meeting this month when the workers were told to ”consult” with their supervisor to ”work out a strategy” for giving evidence to the supposedly confidential investigation.

The revelations have been dubbed a ”corruption of the review process” by the Opposition and throw the integrity of the inquiry already the subject of controversy over the protection of witnesses’ identities into greater doubt.

The office of Children’s Minister Joy Burch said the documents, which also contain evidence of departmental staff being pressured to identify photo opportunities for the Minister, were clumsily worded and all staff had been encouraged to cooperate frankly with the review.

My suspicion is that genuine malfeasance would not have been documented.

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I’d be way more concerned that former staff presenting supposedly confidential evidence have been named… if an inquiry is to have any hope of being genuine, those presenting evidence should have their confidence respected – especially if that was the understanding that lead to the staff member providing their evidence.

But then again, what are the chances the Stanhope Government wanted this inquiry to discover “the truth”?

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