Pre-election warning to NSW politicians from ICAC chief John Hatzistergos

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New South Wales politicians should not weaponise matters that are yet to be investigated in order to gain attention or political advantage, the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) chief, John Hatzistergos has warned.

According to a Sydney Morning Herald report, in a foreword to ICAC’s annual report tabled on Monday, Hatzistergos said that the matters to the commission have hit a 25-year-high which shows “that the commission is perceived as a relevant body to which people believe they can report suspected corrupt behaviour in the public sector.”

NSW ICAC chief commissioner John Hatzistergos

Hatzistergos also said an increase in the ICAC’s budget, would allow matters to be finalised quickly and the commission would also focus on educating new MPs on their responsibilities.

“It is once again timely to remind candidates for public office that they should act properly in making referrals,” he said, issuing a stern warning to MPs before the election about using referrals to the commission for political advantage.

The ICAC chief commissioner said that “investigations into allegations of corrupt conduct are rarely if ever assisted by premature publicity” and reiterated that “it is inappropriate to weaponise a referral to the commission for attention or political advantage.”

Source: The Sydney Morning Herald

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