ICAC regional corruption prevention program to visit Riverina and Murray

Wednesday 21 November 2012

The Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) will visit the Riverina and Murray this month as part of the Commission's outreach program to bring anti-corruption initiatives and training to regional NSW.

The visit, to be based in Albury, will include workshops for state and local government agencies to increase awareness about corruption risks and learn the latest ways to minimise the occurrence of corrupt conduct.

The ICAC Commissioner, the Hon David Ipp AO QC, said the Commission is always keen to assist public officials to be equipped with the necessary skills and tools to combat corruption. "The Commission's recent Operation Jarek report found that 22 public officials from 15 public authorities engaged in corrupt conduct by accepting gifts from suppliers as a reward for placing, or as an inducement to continue placing, orders with their companies.

"One of the workshops on offer at this outreach visit will be corruption prevention in procurement, which aims to equip managers and staff involved in procurement responsibility to better handle this area which can be particularly vulnerable to corruption risk. Public officials attending the workshops will also have the opportunity to learn about public interest disclosures (to be conducted by the NSW Ombudsman's office), and fact-finding, which helps agencies to conduct their own internal investigations," Commissioner Ipp said.

The ICAC's Executive Director Corruption Prevention, Dr Robert Waldersee, will host a community leaders' breakfast at Albury, which will be attended by approximately 55 people including the Member for Albury Mr Greg Aplin MP, elected representatives and senior staff from Albury City Council, state government agencies, local business people and interest groups. The visit will also include Mr Max Britton, Senior Investigations Officer, Public Administration Division of the NSW Ombudsman's Office, who will address the breakfast about the role of the Ombudsman. Dr Waldersee will talk about the role and functions of the ICAC.

Agencies attending the outreach activities include the Department of Primary Industries, Department of Planning and Infrastructure, Albury City Council, Murray Shire Council, Murrumbidgee Local Health District, Wagga Wagga City Council and the Office of Environment and Heritage.

The ICAC outreach program has proved highly successful since its inception in 2001. Previous visits have included the Central Coast, the Illawarra, the Central West, the Hunter, the Far West, the South East and New England. The Commission last visited the Riverina in 2008, and but this is the first time it has based a visit in Albury.

News Directors/Ed's note: Media are welcome to attend the Community Leaders' Breakfast at Rydges Albury, 648 Dean Street, Albury, at 7.15am on Tuesday 27 November 2012. Please RSVP to the Commission's Communications Officer, Ellie Prodromou, by 3 pm on Wednesday 21 November 2012 at eprodromou@icac.nsw.gov.au or telephone 02 8281 5913.
 
Media enquiries: ICAC Manager Communications & Media, Nicole Thomas, 02 8281 5799 / 0417 467 801