Wild horse advocates submit to corruption hearing

Heritage Brumby Advocates Australia has made a submission to a public sector hearing on corruption and misconduct, detailing how the government’s response to its concerns had been “inadequate”.

MORE than 50 submissions into a public sector hearing on corruption and misconduct are being considered by Parliament’s Integrity and Oversight Committee, including one from an organisation advocating for the humane treatment of Australia’s wild horses.
Victoria’s four key integrity agencies — the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission, Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner, Victorian Inspectorate and Victorian Ombudsman — took questions from members of the Parliament’s Integrity and Oversight Committee at the public hearing yesterday.
The hearing, which was conducted by video-conference, is considering how Victoria’s integrity agencies undertake their education and prevention functions to expose and address public sector corruption and misconduct.
The committee heard from the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission, Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner, Victorian Inspectorate and Victorian Ombudsman.
Other witnesses included the Local Government Inspectorate, Professor Fiona Haines from the University of Melbourne’s School of Social and Political Sciences and Dr Suelette Dreyfus and Dr Chris Culnane.
The hearing was broadcast live on the Victorian Parliament’s website, and committee chairman Steve McGhie said the key hearing for the inquiry was an opportunity to question Victoria’s integrity agencies on their role and effectiveness in combating corruption and misconduct in the public sector.
Heritage Brumby Advocates Australia, which describes itself as “an independent organisation with a focus on advocacy and systemic change”, is pushing for the humane treatment of wild horses in Australia.
The group, which formed in government plans to shoot brumbies in Alpine parks, supports the humane removal of wild horses from national parks but is pushing for a collaborative framework where “government, science and Brumby advocates work together for a healthy environmental outcome”.
The group’s submission states it expected “a general (even basic) level of engagement” with relevant authorities over the brumby management plan, but its dealing with government agencies and regulator responses to concerns had been “inadequate” and “not compatible with our expectations”.