Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and the Labor Party hate whistleblowers just as much as former Prime Minister Scott Morrison and the Coalition hate whistleblowers. That can easily be proven on many grounds including but not limited to the fact that PM Albanese and the Labor Party have continued with the prosecutions of whistleblowers Richard Boyle and David McBride.
But the Labor government’s attack on David McBride’s ability to defend himself in court has taken the abuse of the legal system to a new low and Prime Minister Anthony Albanese should be ashamed of himself. Watch David McBride’s recent video below where he explains what happened.
I tried to keep an open mind regarding whether or not Anthony Albanese would protect whistleblowers which I wrote about in August. (Click here to read more) But by October it was obvious that PM Anthony Albanese’s government was hunting whistleblowers the same as the previous Scott Morrison government given they had the bare minimum protections for whistleblowers in the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) legislation. (Click here to read more)
The government has in effect stopped David McBride from arguing he is protected by the Public Interest Disclosure Act (the PID Act). That one action by itself says Anthony Albanese and the Labor Party has no interest in protecting whistleblowers.
The reason the major parties hate whistleblowers is that at times whistleblowers have the power to take down the government of the day by exposing corruption. So, the major parties persecute whistleblowers when they can to send a message to other potential whistleblowers to stay silent or they will also be persecuted.
The Human Rights Law Centre has written an article with all the basic details of both cases which starts off:
Whistleblowers should be protected, not punished. But right now, two courageous Australian whistleblowers are on trial for speaking up in the public interest. These cases are profoundly undemocratic; the Human Rights Law Centre is calling on the federal government to drop the prosecutions and urgently reform whistleblowing laws.
Richard Boyle and David McBride each thought they were doing the right thing. Boyle worked at the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and grew concerned about unethical, aggressive debt recovery practices pursued against small business owners. McBride was a lawyer in the Australian Army, who while serving in Afghanistan was troubled by apparent wrongdoing by Australian forces.
The Public Interest Disclosure Act (the PID Act) was enacted by federal parliament in 2013, to encourage whistleblowers to speak up and protect them from adverse consequences. Boyle and McBride each tried to follow the PID Act – they blew the whistle internally first, and then to oversight agencies. Only as a last resort did Boyle and McBride go public – both to the ABC. Speaking up publicly is protected in certain circumstances under the PID Act, which recognises the important democratic role of the media and its importance as a safety-valve when things go wrong and whistleblowing is not heeded internally.
Boyle and McBride have both been vindicated. Independent inquiries have verified the wrongdoing they spoke up about. Reform and change has come about as a result, thanks in part to these courageous whistleblowers. Australia is a better place because they spoke up when they saw something wrong.
But Boyle and McBride are currently on trial, for allegedly telling the truth. Each is presently facing a criminal prosecution, alleging they broke the law in speaking up about government wrongdoing. If convicted, Boyle and McBride are both facing potentially lengthy terms of imprisonment. (Click here to read more)
Both cases are hard to follow because of the suppression orders on both matters. Although the suppression orders on Richard Boyle’s matter have been lifted at least to some degree.
The two cases have been in court the last month as they coincidently both had hearings to have their matters thrown out arguing they are protected under the Public Interest Disclosure Act.
Richard Boyle’s case seems to be adjourned waiting for a judgment on the issue and if he fails to have the matter thrown out, he will face trial in October 2023. (Click here to read more)
David McBride’s attempt to argue in court he is protected from prosecution under the Public Interest Disclosure Act has been withdrawn in very suspicious circumstances, to say the least. In the video below which was published on Monday (7/11/22) this week, on his YouTube channel, David McBride tells the story:
It should also be remembered that it was Julia Gillard when she was Prime Minister who falsely accused WikiLeaks and Julian Assange of breaching Australian laws. Anthony Albanese was part of the Julia Gillard government so for people who think the Labor Party is the great defender of whistleblowers you are sadly wrong.
Labor and the Coalition want secret hearings at the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) to protect their reputations, but they are happy to publicly trash other people’s reputations and even more so if they are whistleblowers.
Based on the matters having hearing dates next year and then likely appeals up to and including the High Court of Australia there is a real possibility one if not both cases could be live election issues at the next federal election which is due by May 2025. The irony is Scott Morrison started the persecution of Richard Boyle and David McBride, but Anthony Albanese’s continuance of their persecution could cost Albanese and the Labor Party at the next election.
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