The NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has announced her resignation after the corruption watchdog said it was investigating whether she breached public trust.
The NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) is probing whether Ms Berejiklian had a conflict of interest when she awarded grants to several community organisations between 2012 and 2018.
Ms Berejiklian said she would step down as soon as a new leader is picked.
ICAC statement in full:
Further Operation Keppel public inquiry
Friday 1 October 2021
The NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) will hold a further public inquiry in Operation Keppel from10:00 amonMonday 18 October 2021.
The Commission is investigating whether, between 2012 and 2018, the Hon Gladys Berejiklian MP engaged in conduct that:
- constituted or involved a breach of public trust by exercising public functions in circumstances where she was in a position of conflict between her public duties and her private interest as a person who was in a personal relationship with the then NSW Member of Parliament, Mr Daryl Maguire, in connection with: grant funding promised and/or awarded to the Australian Clay Target Association Inc in 2016/2017; and grant funding promised and/or awarded to the Riverina Conservatorium of Music in Wagga Wagga in 2018; and/or
- constituted or involved the partial exercise of any of her official functions, in connection with: grant funding promised and/or awarded to the Australian Clay Target Association Inc in 2016/2017; grant funding promised and/or awarded to the Riverina Conservatorium of Music in Wagga Wagga in 2018; and/or
- constituted or involved the dishonest or partial exercise of any of her official functions and/or a breach of public trust by refusing to exercise her duty pursuant to section 11 of theIndependent Commission Against Corruption Act 1988to report any matter that she suspected on reasonable grounds concerned or may concern corrupt conduct in relation to the conduct of Mr Daryl Maguire; and/or
- was liable to allow or encourage the occurrence of corrupt conduct by Mr Maguire.
The Commission is also investigating whether, between 2012 and August 2018, Mr Maguire engaged in conduct that involved a breach of public trust by using his public office, involving his duties as a member of the NSW Parliament, and the use of parliamentary resources, to improperly gain a benefit for himself, G8wayInternational/G8wayInternational Pty Ltd and associated persons.
The general scope and purpose of the public inquiry is to gather evidence relevant to the matters being investigated for the purpose of determining the matters referred to in section 13(2) of the ICAC Act.
The Commission has decided that public inquiries will be conducted, as far as practicable, remotely via audio visual link (AVL) until there is a change in the current COVID-19 public health orders. Only those whose presence on Commission premises is deemed essential for the effective conduct of the public inquiry will be permitted on-site. Members of the public and the media will therefore not be permitted to attend the premises for the course of the Operation Keppel public inquiry. There is further information in thepublic inquiry protocol on the Commission’s website.
MS Teams is the AVL technology that the Commission will use to conduct the public inquiry remotely. The Commission will live stream the MS Teams proceedings via its website, www.icac.nsw.gov.au. The Commission will also upload exhibits (provided they are not subject to non-publication orders), transcripts and witness lists to the website. Updates will be provided throughout the course of the inquiry via the ICAC Twitter account (@nswicac).
Assistant Commissioner the Hon Ruth McColl AO SC will preside at the public inquiry. Counsel Assisting the Commission will be Mr Scott Robertson and Mr Alex Brown.
It is expected that the inquiry will continue for approximately 10 days. A witness list for the first week of the public inquiry will be published closer to the commencement date of the proceedings, along with further information about how to access the live stream. The Commission will also advise if there are changes to the public health orders that may affect the conduct of the inquiry.