Another vote on public Oakden hearings

With the introduction of a Bill to enable open ICAC hearings, the State Liberals have reiterated calls for Labor and Independent MPs to back the legislation to enable ICAC Commissioner Bruce Lander to conduct hearings into the Oakden scandal in public.

After Labor and Independent Members blocked legislation in the House of Assembly, an identical Bill has been introduced in the Legislative Council by Hon Dennis Hood MLC, which will be supported by the Liberal Party.

“It’s time for the Labor Party to cast off the cloak of secrecy and change their position on an open, public investigation into the Oakden scandal,” said Shadow Attorney-General Vickie Chapman.

“If the Weatherill Labor Government continues to arrogantly block this push for public hearings on Oakden, then the pressure will be on Independent MPs Martin Hamilton-Smith, Geoff Brock and Frances Bedford to back the legislation when it comes before the House of Assembly.

“There is an avalanche of support for public hearings, from the families of Oakden residents, to the general public, and a broad cross-section of the Parliament.

“The only people in South Australia who are against public hearings and increased transparency are the Labor caucus, Mr Hamilton-Smith, Mr Brock and Ms Bedford.”

It’s expected that Mr Hood’s Bill will pass the Legislative Council with the support of the Liberal Party and cross-bench MLCs.