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EYE-BALL Opinion on – Why did Mark Arbib jump Ship? – Was he the smartest of them all –


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– Why did Mark Arbib jump Ship?
– Was he the smartest of them all –
| Author: EYE-BALL Opinion | 9th Aug 2012 |
T he look into the past can often reveal reasons that were not obvious at the time.  Why did Mark Arbib jump ship – was he clever enough to know that his involvement in a number of somewhat ‘dubious’ activities was about to be dumped on his door step?  Was it to make way for Bob Carr?

A look into a past SMH story might reveal more that it did at the time given where events have taken us all … a story published November ’11 is copied below:

Link by link, the powerbrokers of the Right emerge

| Author: Kate McClymont | Date: Nov 22 2011 | Link to On-Line Story. |

There are connections between ALP members, writes Kate McClymont.

The sale of land for $1, mysterious donors, property developers bankrolling a company of an MP’s son, union officials getting mining deals – welcome to the NSW Right where connections are crucial.

It was in July 2003 that Eric Roozendaal and Mark Arbib – both prodigious fundraisers through their then positions as head and deputy head of the NSW Labor party – completed their respective real estate purchases.

Neither has been able to explain what coincidence led to them purchasing boutique beachside apartments not only in the same suburb but also in the very same block.

Mr Arbib’s unit in “Sea Breeze”, only 100 metres from the surf at Maroubra, was purchased in the name of his wife, Kelli Field, who works in investor relations at Macquarie Bank, having previously been a policy adviser to Eddie Obeid and Michael Costa’s chief of staff. Mr Roozendaal’s was bought by a family company.

Of the 20 townhouses, built by developers Brian and Garry Boyd, the purchase price of only two apartments in the block was not disclosed to land titles department. They were Mr Arbib’s and Mr Roozendaal’s.

Residing in the same block, in a unit owned by the Boyds right next door to Mr Arbib’s, was Moses Obeid, son of the controversial Labor figure Eddie Obeid.

Having sold the apartment in 2007 for $960,000, the Arbibs bought a $1.625 million house in South Coogee. They have lodged plans for a $1.15 million renovation. Because the South Coogee house is registered in his wife’s name, Mr Arbib is not required to disclose it in his pecuniary interest declaration.

Meanwhile, questions have been raised in Labor circles as to whether Mr Arbib, the federal Sports Minister, was receiving an undisclosed benefit by not paying rent when staying in Canberra during parliamentary sitting days.

During 2007 to 2009, Mr Arbib stayed in Alexandra Williamson’s two-bedroom apartment in Forrest. Ms Williamson, a staffer in the office of the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, is the daughter of Mr Arbib’s and Mr Roozendaal’s close friend, embattled Health Services Union boss Michael Williamson, who is the subject of a police investigation.

Just before Labor lost the last election Mr Roozendaal appointed Mr Williamson to a government board.

Mr Arbib, through a spokesman, said he was adamant that he paid rent directly to Ms Williamson. Ms Williamson’s only comment, sent by email, was: “Mark Arbib and I lived together where he paid a portion of the rent.”

While Mr Arbib and Mr Roozendaal were finalising their Maroubra purchases from Telmet Ventures, across town the Boyds’s company was successfully lobbying the Labor-controlled Strathfield council to rezone contaminated land at Homebush West.

The Boyds’s development site comprised two blocks of land that were joined together. One was purchased from State Rail for $3 million and the other was purchased from Hatrick Chemicals, for only $10. It is understood the price was so low because of the amount of remediation required. The council later allowed the Boyds to more than double the number of apartments to more than 1000.

A Herald investigation has found that the Boyd brothers have enjoyed a colourful past, having been mentioned in the Stewart royal commission on alleged telephone interceptions.

Known as The Age Tapes, police illegally recorded phone conversations, including numerous ones between Morgan Ryan, a disgraced solicitor, and the Boyd brothers.

At the time Garry Boyd was working at the immigration department and Brian Boyd was licensee of the Regents Park Hotel. The findings of the royal commission noted that the conversations between Ryan, crime boss Abe Saffron and the Boyd brothers “are clearly consistent with their participation in the conduct of SP betting activities at the Regents Park Hotel” as well as illegal gambling.

However, the Boyds were not charged and their involvement with Ryan faded into the background when the more sensational claims emerged between High Court judge Lionel Murphy and his “little mate” Ryan.

Since then Garry, 69, and Brian, 62, have made their fortunes in property development companies that include Paynter Dixon, Payce Consolidated, Helnia and Telmet Ventures.

The various companies have done work for clubs, the Defence Department, as well as many developments in Labor-controlled council areas in Sydney’s inner west.

Through their companies, the Boyds have donated more than $200,000 to Labor. More interesting is the $230,000 the brothers donated to the party between 2003 and 2006 using $2 shelf companies.

When asked about his relationship with the Boyds, former MP Eddie Obeid said: “I am not interested in you canvassing my friends and people I know.”

The Boyds, through their lawyer, said: “The Boyd family does not have a relationship with the Obeid family, nor have they ever been close, either in business or socially.”

But Telmet Ventures, the same company that built the Maroubra apartment block, was a shareholder in one of Moses Obeid’s companies, while a $2 Boyd shelf company was a shareholder in Moses Obeid’s company Streetscape Projects, which had won a lucrative tender to supply multi-function poles to the City of Sydney council despite coming last in the tender. However, Streetscape recently lost a $10 million case brought by the City of Sydney council.

And a vacant site that Payce purchased in Abbotsford in late 2005 had an Obeid company as a shareholder and tenant. Through their lawyer, the Boyds said the Obeids played no part in the transaction.

Another Boyd shelf company had a shareholding in the privately owned Donaldson Coal, which was granted the lease for an open-cut coalmine near Beresfield by Eddie Obeid when he was mining minister. The Boyd brothers not only financed the project but, within months of the lease being signed by Mr Obeid, they also joined the board.

In March this year, during the dying days of the NSW Labor government, then planning minister Tony Kelly oversaw the transfer of 70 hectares of Crown land in the Hunter Valley to White Energy for only $1.

The transfer of the land to White Energy had been advocated several years earlier by then mines minister Ian Macdonald. In 2009 he appointed White’s chairman, Travers Duncan, to the NSW Clean Coal Council.

Mr Macdonald also granted two mining licences to Cascade Coal, a private company of which Mr Duncan is also director. Cascade took out an option to buy the $3.65 million farm of the Obeid family, which happened to be located near the proposed mine near Mudgee. Mr Macdonald was criticised for another lease he granted – without going to tender – to a company associated with ex-union boss John Maitland who paid $165,000 for his 11 per cent share in NuCoal Resources.

Mr Maitland’s shares were later valued at $12million

but have taken a dive following last week’s news that the

Liberal government plans to refer the matter to the Independent Commission Against Corruption.

As for Mr Macdonald, he is set to star in a corruption inquiry that starts on Thursday. The ICAC will hear allegations that the former minister accepted a $10,000 bribe, plus unspecified “services” from developer Ron Medich, who’s been charged over the murder of former associate Michael McGurk.

… read more …

Watch Mark Arbib’s resignation speech …

Mr Arbib is now working for James Packer – read story here … and that brings so much more to the table when this story is read.

What happened to his heartfelt plea for more family time?

His prepared speech can now be seen as just words on a bit of paper – there is no truth in the context of the above video, the linked Packer story, and the SMH story that now allows to look at his exit from politics with a different perspective.

This raises a number of issues – how much of our Leaders personal lives are we entitled to be aware of?  Should Politicians be allowed to live double lives all the while deceiving the electorate at large as to what and who they are?

Mr Arbib obviously felt things were closing around him – he knew of the HSU scandal about to break – he has knowledge of Gillard’s past, maybe he just made a smart move.   Does James Packer know of his past – or is that why Packer hired him?

Whatever the reason – working for Packer will not give him the ‘family time’ he so emotionally spoke about during the above speech.

In whatever happens in the coming weeks, months over the HSU, AWU, and Gillard’s, Shorten’s, Conroy’s, and others involved with alleged sordid Union frauds, please make Arbib a part of that enquiry.

Have your say where it counts: – contact your Local Federal Representative via the links below and let them know how you feel about this, or any other topic that you feel strongly about – or you can just post a comment below and let off some steam.

Links to Australian Parliamentary Website – MP’s

The EYE-BALL Opinion …

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