I love the can-do spirit of our readers. How good, and well researched, is this letter from one of our readers to the Immigration Department about John McTernan, written last Friday
23 November 2012
Department of Immigration and Citizenship
Attention: 457 Centre of Excellence
GPO Box 9984
Dear Sir / Madam,
Regarding: Mr John McTernan, Director of Communications
for the Prime Minister of Australia
I understand that Mr John McTernan is in Australia on a 457 Visa,
Temporary Business (Long Stay) - Standard
Business Sponsorship (Subclass 457), or,
Independent Executive Further Application
Onshore (Subclass 457IEFAO)
I believe that Mr McTernan’s visa should be revoked for the following reasons:
My understanding is that Mr McTernan was brought
to Australia by the South Australian government as a “Thinker in
Residence”. In this role, Mr McTernan
was to produce a report on ‘Public Service Efficiency’.
To date, Mr McTernan’s report has not been released despite being due for
release over one year ago, in October
to a report in “The Australian” (30 Jul 2012), a South Australian government
spokesman stated, “The time taken by Mr McTernan to finalise his report is
consistent with timelines taken by other thinkers.” Accordingly, Mr McTernan’s
position appears no more unique than other thinkers.
Therefore, the position could be filled by an Australian citizen. The position
does not require a 457 applicant.
Adelaide Thinkers in Residence, today advised me that the unreleased report is
titled, “Are You Being Served – Toward More Responsive Public Services”. They advise the report is still being
edited. With the report in excess of one year overdue, and still being edited,
my belief, therefore, is that other
writers are writing large sections of the report to cover for Mr McTernan’s
lack of input.
Once again demonstrating that an Australian citizen was suitable for Mr
McTernan’s position. It did not require
a 457 applicant.
South Australian government is not disclosing to Australian or South Australian
taxpayers the amount paid to Mr McTernan for a job they say cannot be filled by
an Australian resident.
I believe it is in the public interest to advise taxpayers the total cost of
importing a worker for a position that the South Australian government says
cannot be filled by an Australian citizen.
South Australian government have not advised taxpayers the benefits and
training imparted by Mr McTernan to other workers, part of the obligation of
457 Visa scheme applies to Business, not to Government.
November 2011, Mr McTernan transferred employment to the Australian Federal
Government as Director of Communications for the Prime Minister of Australia.
He is on the public payroll funded by the Australian taxpayer.
However, he has publicly stated that he works for the Australian Labor Party, a
private organisation. This is contrary to 457 rules and obligations, condition
position can also be filled by an Australian citizen. Indeed, similar positions
have been filled by Australian’s during the reign of each government. The Australian taxpayer , I believe, would
prefer an Australian citizen to fill a senior role that influences the messages
disseminated to the Australian population.
Communications Director, Mr McTernan is divisive for Australia. I believe he
has breached point 6 of the Character Requirement (Fact Sheet 79), and is inciting
“discord in the Australian community or in a segment of that community”.
This is demonstrated by Mr McTernan advising our Prime Minister to pursue a
‘gender war’, extremely similar to one he wrote about for “The Telegraph” (UK 7
Oct 2011), titled “Labour’s Reshuffle Gives David Cameron Even More Of A Woman
writing that article, Mr McTernan was not working in the occupation in which he
was nominated, in accordance with his Visa conditions.
Indeed, he could have been completing the overdue ‘Public Service Efficiency’
October 2012, Mr McTernan travelled on a publicly funded trip with the Prime
Minister to USA. Amongst other things, he met with President Obama’s polling
team. I doubt the knowledge he acquired
was of use to the Australian taxpayer, however, it may be of use to the Australian
Labor Party’s re-election strategy.
Again, this calls into question the division of his paid work, ie, Australian
taxpayer, versus his stated employer – the Australian Labor Party.
Additionally, this opportunity could have been used to instill skills into an
Mr McTernan does not meet the requirements
of the Independent Executive Further
Application Onshore (Subclass 457IEFAO) visa.
I believe, Mr
McTernan’s 457 visa should never have been granted. He is divisive in the
community, and his role could be filled by an Australian citizen. Accordingly,
I request that Mr McTernan’s visa be immediately revoked.