Mr CARROLL (Minister for Industry and Employment) (12:52:32) — It is my pleasure to speak on the motion. I took a lot of notes while the member for Hawthorn was speaking. It was a very wideranging contribution he made. I gather from the member for Hawthorn’s contribution that the opposition are indeed going to support the motion. That does not surprise me because the Leader of the Opposition himself on a previous occasion referred himself to IBAC, and I suspect they will want to see this come forward as well —
Honourable members interjecting.
Mr CARROLL — But that was unheard of. I still remember the news reporting that night that the Leader of the Opposition had referred himself to IBAC. I thought it was unheard of for a leader to do that. So I think they are going to go down the same track and try and get on with this process and get it done.
The member for Box Hill also did a lot of speaking about artifices throughout his contribution. I thought I would go to the Cambridge dictionary because I know the member for Kew is working on his curriculum for school students, which will be about Brexit. The Cambridge dictionary defines ‘artifice’ as ‘(the use of) a clever trick or something intended to deceive’. Well, what were the schemes of the member for Lowan or Mr Mantach? Nothing could better meet the definition of artifice. When the shoe is on the other foot they are all over the shop, not wanting to support it.
I congratulate the Deputy Premier for trying to clean this matter up once and for all. He has done a lot of work. There was the FOI request that uncovered that ministerial advisers for current opposition members of Parliament were not putting in for leave but working on the campaign, contrary to the rules that we all know. At the end of the day we know it came out that Mr Mantach was not siphoning off funds for the Liberal Party; he was actually siphoning off funds for personal gain. We have seen subsequent to that —
An honourable member interjected.
Mr CARROLL — Yes, he went to jail. Then you had the court cases where they were trying to recoup the funds. Remember the Cormack Foundation and the shares that Mantach was buying for himself? Then we saw the Liberal Party, particularly Michael Kroger, in dispute with some liberal blue bloods about who controlled the Cormack Foundation. They are in a world of pain and hence they are so upset, because they know that at the previous election they relied on a dodgy scheme and they know that they do not have the campaign funds to run a proper campaign in about four months. We also see currently that the prize jewel in the Liberal Party offices, 104 Exhibition Street, may be up for sale depending on whoever has the best price. It is very important that the matter that the Deputy Premier has put in this motion be cleaned up once and for all. I commend the Deputy Premier.
If there is nothing to hide, clear your name. I say well done to the member for Lowan; she went out and did a press conference today, and that is a good thing to do. Clear your name. You have got nothing to hide. Come out. She did that, but we have not heard from all the other members of Parliament that the Deputy Premier has listed, have we? If you have not got something to hide, come in and support it. The Leader of the Opposition referred himself to IBAC once upon a time. We know what happened there. We know about Ventnor. We know all about Fishermans Bend and the rezonings.
Now we see through the Deputy Premier’s very well worded motion a way to go forward. I would have thought those on the other side themselves would want to know a little bit more, in terms of oversight, about just how Mr Mantach could do that. He thought he would get caught; he is on the public record as saying he would get caught. It is amazing that it took so long. He is spending time in jail, which he deserves. I saw a very strange press release from the member for Kew yesterday. I do not know what planet he was on. Get your house in order. We are happy to assist you. We want a very strong contest at the end of this year. We are happy to assist, whatever it means.
Let us look at the history. I have got an article here with a video entitled ‘Fishermans Bend: the new gold rush’, headed ‘I wasn’t told’: Matthew Guy’s misadventures with Liberal donors’ by Royce Millar, dated 8 August 2017. Another article headed ‘The secret life of Matthew Guy, Liberal leader’ by Farrah Tomazin and Royce Millar was published on 9 November 2017. There are only so many headlines I think the Leader of the Opposition can handle, and the Deputy Premier’s motion will go a long way forward to making sure that this matter is investigated fully.
The member for Box Hill spoke about the Auditor‑General. We know that the Auditor‑General and the Ombudsman — and he would know as the former chief law officer of this state — have very important roles. They are well‑resourced officers and they should be used in the manner that we expect of them. This referral seeks to do that. It is a complete and thorough motion put together by the Deputy Premier, but it is also evidence‑based from the FOIs that have been released recently, and we all saw that ourselves on the Channel 7 news.
We all want to know and get this thing over and done with. It is a very important motion. I get the feeling from the contributions, particularly the contribution from the member for Hawthorn, that the motion indeed will be supported, which I think is a good thing. I think it will help a process be completed as quickly as possible. I think the opposition know they want this thing done with. They know they have got nowhere to go on this — that it needs to come out, it needs to have the light shone on it. That is what democracy is about: shining the light on it. It is why we have institutions like IBAC. It is why the Leader of the Opposition referred himself to IBAC when the Madafferi affair came up. He referred himself. It is why we are doing our job as a government, making sure that with the office‑holders — whether it be the Ombudsman, whether it be the Auditor‑General — there is the scrutiny that the Victorian Parliament needs and deserves for accountability, for transparency. That is what we are doing. That is why this motion by the Deputy Premier is very, very important. I congratulate the Deputy Premier. I think it will be a very important motion going forward. I look forward, following the contribution of the member for Murray Plains, to seeing the motion supported.
Sitting suspended 12.59 p.m. until 2.02 p.m.
Business interrupted under sessional orders.