Desperate and Disorderly Government Makes More Than 100 Appointments In A Week

In the rush to make Prime Minister Turnbull’s deadline for an early election, government ministers have announced more than 100 appointments in a single week.

THE HON MARK DREYFUS QC MP

SHADOW ATTORNEY-GENERAL

SHADOW MINISTER FOR THE ARTS

MEMBER FOR ISAACS

 

DESPERATE AND DISORDERLY GOVERNMENT MAKES MORE THAN 100 APPOINTMENTS IN A WEEK

 

In the rush to make Prime Minister Turnbull’s deadline for an early election, government ministers have announced more than 100 appointments in a single week.

 

From the Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia to the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions, there are several extremely important appointments in the mix. 79 appointments alone were for positions to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal, which is the only avenue of appeal against government decisions available to the Australian public.

 

Mr Turnbull’s decision to rush to an early election has clearly compromised orderly decision-making processes. The rush of appointments in the week before an election, while the Budget was being handed down, has saved many from public scrutiny.

 

Many of these appointments do not take effect until after the election in August, and could have been made by an incoming government. The fact they have been announced now shows the government desperately trying to stack government agencies with preferred candidates for fear it might lose.

 

Labor was not consulted on any of the appointments in the Attorney-General’s portfolio, the bulk of the 103 total appointments, many of which include former Liberal Party staffers, MPs or party members.

 

This is from a government whose Deputy Prime Minister said, back in 2013:

 

We certainly did put the government on notice that after the election had been announced by Julia Gillard that we asked to be kept informed of any major appointments that would take place after the election.

  • Julie Bishop, Australian Agenda, 8 September 2013

 

What has changed? The Prime Minister’s desperation to get to a double-dissolution election and a marathon election campaign as soon as possible, that’s what.

 

This is not the way “grown-up government” should be run.

 

SATURDAY, 7 MAY 2016