NT Shadow Minister for Police, Lynne Walker, today called on the Chief Minister, Adam Giles, to remove himself from any role in creating the Terms of Reference for an Independent Judicial Inquiry as there are serious unanswered questions as to what he knew, and when, surrounding the allegations of the former Police Commissioner’s interference in a criminal investigation.
“Adam Giles has said he will make available his emails, phone records and text messages when he announced the Judicial Inquiry would be established. If even he has identified he’s the subject of rumours then he has a clear conflict of interest and should stand aside from any involvement in establishing the Inquiry,” Ms Walker said.
‘Last week Adam Giles said:
“The allegations that have been coming out about senior members of the police force actively running a coup or a campaign in cahoots with some alleged politicians, is a significant problem. That is spreading to the point of the Police Commissioner being removed albeit under a cloud of allegations and also this challenge today.” (Media conference Tuesday 3 February.)
“I have good evidence that this has involved an orchestrated political coup to get rid of the police commissioner, the former one, and there have been the involvement of members of parliament. The judicial inquiry will have a look at it. If I find that there is evidence they'll go, and I'll take them to court. (Alice Springs branch meeting secret recordings Wednesday 4 February.)
“The circumstances around the undermining process, spreading rumours about myself by one parliamentary member in particular and the upper echelons of police, I think is very bad and signifies a significant problem within police, hence the judicial inquiry that I've just announced.” (Alice Springs branch meeting secret recordings Wednesday 4 February.)
“I will be making available to the judicial investigator in regards to this process, access to all emails, phone records, text messages and to find out who knew what, when. There have been a series of allegations and rumours made today, particularly in relation to some senior police and members of the political fraternity on the Country Liberals party side.” (Alice Springs branch meeting secret recordings Wednesday 4 February).
“What evidence does Adam Giles have? Has he provided that evidence to the Public Interest Disclosure Commissioner or the Ombudsman who are currently investigating the allegations into the former Police Commissioner John McRoberts?" Ms Walker said.
“Will Adam Giles come clean on who in the Country Liberals party he is accusing of being involved in a political coup?”
Ms Walker said that the outrageous attack Adam Giles made against Police, that he now says ‘went too far’ has made his position untenable.
“We have a Government embroiled in political infighting and a Chief Minister who shoots from the hip with unsubstantiated outrageous allegations. That is no way to run the Territory,” Ms Walker said.
“If they can’t run themselves, they certainly can’t run the Territory.”
Media contact: Cathryn Tilmouth 0427 500 667
Opposition Shadow Minister for Police, Fire and Emergency Services Lynne Walker has called on Chief Minister Adam Giles to immediately clarify when he was first made aware of allegations that Police Commissioner John McRoberts allegedly interfered into a criminal investigation.
“It’s hard to believe that the Chief Minister, who was Police Minister when the Police Commissioner is alleged to have interfered in a criminal investigation, was not made aware of police concerns back then.
“He needs to explain when he first heard allegations about interference by the Police Commissioner, what he heard, who he heard it from, and who he spoke to about it.
The Chief Minister also needs to explain why he thought it was appropriate to go on holidays the day after he states he was formally told of the investigation into the Police Commissioner’s conduct that saw the Police Commissioner resign days later.
“Last Friday Mr Giles said that he was aware that rumours were circulating for several years that Mr McRoberts and Ms Kamitsis had a ‘relationship.’
“Mr Giles was the Minister for Police at the time of the arrest. If he knew of these rumours in November when Ms Kamitsis was arrested, surely he was duty-bound to ensure that the police had considered whether there could be a conflict of interest if the Commissioner was in any way involved in the investigation,” Ms Walker said.
“The government is still to explain the terms of reference for each of the 3 different investigations they have established. How do they fit together, when they will report, who they will report to? Will the findings be made public?
“Is the Chief Minister’s knowledge of, and involvement in this saga and his apparent lack of action part of the investigations? Which agency will investigate what the Chief Minister knew; when he knew it and why he failed to act?”
Media contact: Louise Connor 0438 241 211
Leader of the Opposition, Delia Lawrie, is calling on the CLP Government to immediately publicly release the Terms of Reference for the investigation into allegations surrounding the former Police Commissioner John McRoberts.
“Territorians deserve to know the Terms of Reference for this investigation given the concerns surrounding the Police Commissioner’s resignation. This is a grave matter that needs transparency and accountability,” Ms Lawrie said.
“What are the timelines for this investigation and will a full or interim report be tabled in Parliament Sittings in February?”
Ms Lawrie said questions still remain about the extent of knowledge the CLP Government had of this issue before the former Police Commissioner’s resignation last week.
“Did Chief Minister Adam Giles know about this conflict of interest prior to handing over the Police portfolio to Peter Chandler?” Ms Lawrie asked.
“Who in Government is across the details of the allegations surrounding Mr McRoberts given that Minister Robyn Lambley provided comments to ABC News yesterday that: ‘He (John McRoberts) was involved in the initial planning for how, er, what the strategy would be around the investigation.’
“It is extraordinary that Adam Giles remains missing in action throughout this crisis and has failed to even issue a statement.
“This again highlights the Territory’s need for an ICAC style body that would possess the strong powers to investigate every aspect of this issue.”
Media contact: Cathryn Tilmouth 0427 500 667