Approval of the Napthine government’s move to ensure the Auditor-General’s independence came today from Liberty Victoria.
Liberty President Jane Dixon SC said it was vital for the proper oversight of government to keep this office as independent as possible.
The State Services Authority had the power to investigate the Auditor-General. The authority is being replaced by a Public Sector Commission, which will be stripped of such a power.
Recently the Auditor-General, John Doyle, publicly expressed worries over setting up the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC), Ms Dixon said. “It is important that he be free to make such comments.”
Both IBAC and its main oversight body, the Victorian Inspectorate, will be exempt from investigation.
Ms Dixon said Mr Doyle found that government cutbacks made his work even more important because of the potential for a reduction in internal audits and accountability provisions.
“This may not seem crucial in the scheme of things, but an independent Auditor-General meets Victoria’s need for rigid scrutiny of public expenditure."
For further comment or interviews please contact Liberty Victoria President, Jane Dixon SC.