With a multiple investigations currently underway with regard to the ACC in the wake of Michelle Boag’s and Bronwyn Pullar’s shameless standover attempts surely it is time to look once again at having an Independent Commission Against Corruption.
They could easily take on an investigation such as this and more to the point impartially look into a plethora of other such allegations of impropriety amongst our elected officials, civil servants, and local body affairs.
The Independent Commission Against Corruption could also take over the enforcement aspects of the Electoral Act given the police seem so unwilling or unable to deal with breaches against the laws that are supposed to protect our democracy.
With powers similar to the SFO and FMA, they could look into the financial affairs of political parties, unions, and public relations and lobbying firms.
There must be many PR practitioners that have looked at the antics that have been revealed of Michelle Boag’s shameless standover of an Insurance company, Vodafone and now ACC and start wondering precisely what they have committed in writing as they lobbied government departments and organisations.
The ICAC could easily sit under the auspices of the Auditor-General and provide real investigative and prosecutorial teeth.
I believe that the political will exists for such a body now. Labour can hardly oppose it after screaming loudly about cronyism, corruption and favouritism, never mind their own shameful record in such regard. NZ First can;t oppose it because it is one of their founding principles to establish such a body. The Greens can’t oppose it either because they have expressed a willingness to control, register and monitor lobbying firms….leaving just the Maori party, ACT and Peter Dunne. I hardly think ACT would oppose it either.
For the first time I believe there is near unanimous consensus that could allow the formation of an Independent Commission Against Corruption. Does the the government have the courage to establish it? That remains to be seen.