THE HON MARK DREYFUS KC MP
MEMBER FOR ISAACS
NATIONAL ANTI-CORRUPTION COMMISSION BILL 2022
Consideration Of Senate Message
Mr DREYFUS (Isaacs—Attorney-General and Cabinet Secretary) (12:58): This is a historic day for our parliament and our nation.
Ahead of the election on 21 May, the Australian Labor Party pledged that if the Australian people gave us the honour of governing this nation, we would repay their trust by returning integrity, honesty and accountability to government. Labor told Australians that if we were elected, we would legislate a National Anti-Corruption Commission this year. Today, that commitment is honoured in full.
Labor said we would deliver a watchdog with teeth and without delay, and that is what we have done. The commission will be able to investigate serious or systemic corrupt conduct across the entire federal public sector. The commission will have the necessary powers to root out corruption when it occurs. And, importantly, the commission will work to prevent corruption from happening in the first place.
One of my first actions as Attorney-General was to set up a task force in the Attorney-General's Department, headed by a deputy secretary, to deliver on this important body of work. I know many staff from that task force are here today and are watching. I thank them for their work.
This has been an important body of work. It is something that we on this side of the House have been committed to for a long time. We called on members of both places to engage constructively and to work together on this legislation, and they did. I'm proud that the bills that will pass the parliament include amendments that reflect our cooperation and our willingness to work with all sides of the parliament and stakeholders to make the National Anti-Corruption Commission the best it can be.
This legislation delivers the single-biggest integrity reform this parliament has seen in decades. When you change the government you change the country. The National Anti-Corruption Commission will change our country forever. The Albanese Labor government has delivered. The government supports these amendments.