27 Feb 2018

Today in Senate Estimates, the Government tried its hardest to continue to shut down questions about the AFP investigation into the leak by Minister Cash’s office of the Registered Organisations Commission raid on the AWU.

The length that the Turnbull government will go to avoid scrutiny about Senator Cash and her office’s role in the leaking of the police raid appears to include using the AFP as a political shield without the AFP’s permission or knowledge.

When asked if he was aware of broad and constant claims of Public Interest Immunity (PII) by former Attorney General George Brandis and Minister Cash which relied on the ongoing AFP investigation, the Commissioner of the Australian Federal Police, Andrew Colvin, said he was not:

“That is the first I’ve heard of the Attorney General making that claim.”
AFP Commissioner Andrew Colvin, Tuesday, 27th February 2018

Both Mr Brandis and Minister Cash have claimed PII on numerous occasions to avoid answering any questions or providing information about the ROC raid on the AWU - particularly who knew what and when.

The question has to be asked – what are they covering up?

The range of documents and information they are claiming PII or sub judice over is amazingly broad, yet Minister Cash is unable and unwilling to explain how much of it could influence the police investigation, or even how.

At the same time as claiming PII, Minister Cash is also claiming her office is not under investigation. Either the AFP is investigating her office and her role in the leak and the Minister has to stand down, or the Minister has to provide the documents and answer the questions that have been put to her. 

It is obvious this is a complete cover up. What is this government trying to hide?

The refusal to cooperate is treating the Parliament and the Australian people with contempt.  

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