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Ombudsman ‘assassinated’

Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown says that the ombudsman, a decent man working in the public interest, has been politically assassinated.

"The Government went after this good man, egged on by the Liberals. His ‘crime' was to supply non-political questions - rather than answers - to Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, as a means of getting information on the public record," Senator Brown said in Brisbane.

"This unfair, nasty outcome shows that an apology for a mistake, far from being encouraged as part of political life in Canberra, will seal your fate."

"The message is out there for future applicants for the job of ombudsman: forget the public interest, keep your head down, make no waves and listen carefully for the dog whistle of political obedience."

"The Greens will move to provide that office with a proper report-back structure to protect it from future suppression."

"When Parliament resumes, the Greens will move to give the Commonwealth Ombudsman the same access as the Auditor-General to the Public Accounts and Audit Committee to ensure that future holders of that office can overcome the roadblock on reporting back to Parliament on performance."



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