Submission from the Accountability Round Table to the Interim Working Group
This is a full reproduction of a submission received from the Accountability Round Table on 4 September 2016.
On Saturday, the AGM of the Accountability Round Table Ltd took place. (for details re the ART - https://www.accountabilityrt.org/about/) . It will not surprise you to know that the topic of the Australian OGP Action Plan was an agenda item. Among other things, the selection of the civil society members of the IWG was discussed and strongly supported. You will appreciate that ART wishes to assist where it can. We decided that we should, at least, forward the most recently published material of ART relevant to the matters that we submit should be addressed in the NAP. The areas of major concern comprise
- the need to establish a National Integrity System,
- the need to address the problems associated with political funding and
- the urgent need to restore resources to the OAIC and appoint the 3 Statutory Commissioners to enable the OAIC to again discharge its statutory functions.
During the recent Commonwealth Election, ART sought commitments from the Coalition, ALP and Greens on these issues and supported those requests with background material. That material is included at this link: Submission OGPIWG Attachment1. There are also two recent relevant publications:
- the recent ART submission to the Commonwealth “ Establishment of a National Integrity Commission” Parliamentary Committee. (http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/Establishment_of_a_National_Integrity_Commission/NIC/Submissions - Submission 31)
- the recent paper by one of our members, Prof Colleen Lewis, ( for the John Cain Foundation) on political funding - http://www.johncainfoundation.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/jcf-come-clean-political-donations.pdf .
Dr Lewis’s paper also includes the most recent discussion of the “public office public trust principle”, the principle you will see referred to in the attachment. We hope that this material will be of assistance to the IWG. If there are any issues or questions arising out of these matters, we would welcome the opportunity to assist. We ask that this email and the attachment be placed on the Government website as a submission of ART. Yours Sincerely Tim Smith Chair of the Accountability Round Table.