Pressure is mounting on the federal government to deliver on its promise to establish an anti-corruption body nearly three years after an election promise was first made.
Member for Indi Helen Haines told Parliament it would soon be 1000 days since Prime Minister Scott Morrison promised to create a federal watchdog to investigate government corruption in the lead up to the 2019 election.
She moved to suspend standing orders on Tuesday to force debate over the integrity body but the government voted it down.
Ms Haines first introduced a bill in October last year to deliver a federal integrity commission, which would hold public hearings and give members of the public the opportunity to refer concerns to the body.
Only two days remained for the Prime Minister to support the bill and establish the national commission, which she said had the support of more than 80 per cent of Australians across the political spectrum.
"Next week it will be 1000 days since the Prime Minister promised the Australian people an integrity commission," she said.
"Australians are still waiting. It's blindingly obvious the Prime Minister will not deliver one right now.
"Australians are putting their faith in government in ways we've never seen before.
"From lockdown orders to the vaccine rollout, Australians are living up to their side of the bargain and in exchange, when it comes to integrity, this government is taking them for fools."
Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese seconded Ms Haines' motion but said he didn't agree with her exact model.
"We support a national anti-corruption commission with teeth, a national anti-corruption commission with independence and a national anti-corruption commission that can deal with some of the travesties of the use of public funds that we've seen from those opposite over the last eight years," he said.
Labor announced in July it would introduce an anti-corruption body if it won the next election in response to a number of funding scandals uncovered by the audit office, including the so-called sports and community car park "rorts".
"They get out a colour-coded sheet based upon the marginality of electorates and then when the senate has the temerity to ask for access to those documents, they don't have the confidence," Mr Albanese said in question time.
"This is a government that has established structures to avoid transparency and public accountability."
The opposition's planned body will be given a broad jurisdiction to put allegations of government and bureaucratic corruption under the microscope, extending to statutory office holders, government agencies, parliamentarians, personal staff of politicians and other federal public officials.
The proposed extra powers will also allow investigations to cover private individuals and companies involved in government corruption.
Independent Member for Warringah Zali Steggall and Greens leader Adam Bandt also supported Ms Haines' calls, adding the government could make it happen this week if it wanted to.
"The government could have an anti-corruption commission tomorrow, but it is choosing not to," Mr Bandt said.
"Instead, it is coming up with its own model that gives a free pass to politicians, that ensures that there won't be the kind of public hearings ... that the members of the public expect."
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