Corruption hearings will resume into the management and contracts of Victoria’s metro and regional trains as part of Operation Esperance.
The first round of hearings shocked Victorians with allegations, testimony and evidence of serious misconduct and long term, ongoing corrupt behaviour that resulted in the sacking of V/Line’s former CEO, James Pinder.
Meanwhile, Labor Minister Jacinta Allan’s handpicked but incompetent V/Line Board that allowed this corrupt behaviour to go on under its nose remains in place.
The second round of hearings will commence on Monday 29 March at 10 am, and focus on:
The transparency and integrity of major services procurements and tendering processes within the public transport sector in Victoria, following the special report to Parliament in December 2017 of Operation Lansdowne, including but not limited to, conflicts of interest, undeclared relationships and gifts to public officers that may give rise to actual or perceived corrupt conduct;
Whether public officers involved in major contract tender and procurement processes have been improperly influenced through monetary incentives, donations, gifts, or other hospitality and the circumstances surrounding any actual or potential financial benefits obtained by any public officer that may have influenced procurement and tendering processes within the public transport sector in Victoria;
The systems and controls in place within the public transport sector concerning procurements and tendering for major contracts, with particular focus on the existence and adequacy of systems and controls for ensuring the integrity of the procurement process, including by detecting instances of public officers obtaining corrupt benefits or being unduly influenced by contractors;
If the investigation of the above matters identifies serious corrupt conduct on the part of one or more current or former public officers, the extent to which (if at all) organisational culture and practices have fostered that conduct or hindered opportunities or attempts to detect and eliminate that conduct;
The extent to which any suspected corrupt conduct identified above has infiltrated the public transport sector's tendering and procurement processes, across the major public transport operators in Victoria.
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Public Transport (Metropolitan), David Davis MP:
“Labor’s lawless, out of control and corrupt public transport bureaucracy is costing each and every Victorian reduced services and less infrastructure than they would otherwise enjoy.
“Daniel Andrews and his Transport Ministers have turned a blind eye while Labor’s transport fat cats collect “sprinkes” and honest contractors and their employees go without work that is instead corruptly directed to favoured mates for kickbacks.
“IBAC’s public hearings are certain to be an unedifying spectacle. Labor and its henchmen are rotten to the core.”