The AWU Scandal - the AWU Perth Auditors
Immensely busy day

Follow up from the West

I have today spoken with Minister Murray Cowper's office in Western Australia.   He is the Minister for Training and Workforce Development and my letter to Premier Barnett was referred to Minister Cowper for action.

I am told that Minister Cowper's staff have concluded an enquiry into the matters I raised in my letter - then again I was told that the week before last.   We had been promised a letter last week in answer to my letter, I'm told today that we'll get something in writing in the next couple of days.

I am not optimistic about the prospects for further investigation.   I can't imagine how the status quo can prevail, as you'll see in the attached letter below.

FYI here is the original note to Premier Barnett (I know I improperly referred to the Project as the Dawesvill Cutting, it's the Cut!).

        Dear Premier,

In 1991 Thiess Contractors was awarded a contract to build the Dawesville Cutting.   At the time the AWU and many construction companies were represented on the board of the Western Australian Government's statutory authority the Building and Construction Industry Training Fund.

In 1996 the Western Australian Police fraud squad received a complaint from the AWU regarding the apparent embezzlement of some hundreds of thousands of dollars from the AWU by Bruce Wilson a former union official.

The Fraud Squad determined that in the matter reported to it, the proper complainant was Thiess.   Thiess then advised police that it did not believe it had been defrauded and thus it would not furnish a complaint or statement of loss to the police.   The matter was closed with police advising that no offence had been detected.

Premier I am concerned that in its Annual Reports of FY ending 1993 and 1994 to its shareholder or responsible minister, the BCITF reported a manifestly false position regarding the acquittal or disposition of the $516,000 it collected under the "BCITF and Levy Collection Act 1990" and which it then advanced to Thiess for "workplace reform" and training.

The truth is the money that was earmarked for "workplace reform" under an MOU between Thiess and the AWU actually went to the union slush fund set up by Julia Gillard.   It went out of the slush fund in cash and to buy a house in Melbourne.  

I have attached some documents that you might find useful.

Perhaps you might let me know if you are happy for the status quo to endure - or if you intend to investigate this matter further I'd be obliged if you'd allow me to tell my readers.

Michael Smith