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EYE-BALL Opinion – Obeid [Senior] Testimony – ALP doomed for years over endemic corruption issues –

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Title:
– Obeid [Senior] testimony –
– ALP doomed for years over endemic corruption issues –
| Author: EYE-BALL Opinion | 5th Feb 2013 |
The ICAC inquiry into the Obeid/MacDonald corruption continues and yesterday Eddie Obeid, former Mining Minister in the Bob Carr led NSW ALP Government gave his evidence. All the ICAC transcript into the Obeid inquiry can be read on-line via this link.

Obeid’s testimony yesterday reads like a ‘Boston Legal’ main event – Obeid openly defied the ICAC Commissioner in the opening questions to his testimony.  He was as his belligerence continued into his evidence and he was threatened with ‘contempt’ status unless he was more forthcoming.

An extract from the morning opening of Obeid’s testimony is re-produced below under copyright acknowledgement and to give some insight into Obeid’s responses.

THE COMMISSIONER: Mr Watson.

MR WATSON: Is your Edward Moses Obeid?—Yes.

Mr Obeid, tell me, would you think it appropriate for a Minister knowingly to create a mining tenement over his friend’s property?—Could you repeat that?

Would you think it appropriate for a Minister knowingly to create a mining tenement over his friend’s property?—No.

Why not?—Well, I don’t know, I’m not aware of the details and my immediate answer is no.

Why?—That’s my answer.

THE COMMISSIONER: But why do you – – –

MR WATSON: No, but what are the reasons?—Because I don’t believe that should happen.

Why not?—Because it’s inappropriate.

Why?—I’ve told you it’s inappropriate.

No, but why is it inappropriate?—Well, I’m, I have no other explanation other than to say it’s inappropriate for a Minister to put a tenement over anyone’s property that he knows.

THE COMMISSIONER: But there must be reasons for which you have come to that opinion, Mr Obeid. One does not come to an opinion that something is appropriate or inappropriate without there being reasons and you’re being asked for your reasons?—Well, my reason is that I consider it’s wrong and it’s inappropriate.

But why is it wrong?—Because it shouldn’t happen.

Why shouldn’t it happen?—Mr Commissioner, I’ve just answered it in every which way I can.

Yes. Well, I take it then, Mr Obeid, would it fair to say that you simply have a feeling that it is wrong but you do not know, you do not have any rational reasons which you can put forward to explain why you feel that it’s wrong. Is that correct?—Well, I, I believe it was the Department that – – –

No, just answer my question, please?—Well, I, I, I, I believe it’s – – –

Can I just say something, Mr Obeid. You’ve given evidence here before and I will appeal to you again as politely as I can to please answer the question when you are asked a question and not answer some other question. Do you understand that?—Yes, your Honour.

Right. Well, I’m asking you whether that view that I have now formed but which is open to change is, is a fair view namely that while you feel that it is wrong and inappropriate for a Minister to knowingly create a mining tenement over a friend’s property you are unable to give any rational reasons for coming to that view?—(No audible reply)
Yes or no?—I don’t give a rational reason other than it’s wrong and it’s inappropriate.

MR WATSON: Now tell me, Mr Obeid, if a Minister created a mining tenement over a friend’s property would you think it appropriate for the 20 friend to accept it?—I’m not in a position to, to, to either accept or deny, I don’t own the property.

Don’t worry about that, we’re not talking here about specifics, I’m just generalising. Mr Obeid, if a Minister created a mining tenement over this friend’s property would you think it was appropriate for the friend to accept
that?—Mr Watson, I think these tenements are created by the Department and they do it in – – –

THE COMMISSIONER: No, just answer that question?—They do it in the 30 best interests of the Department and the Government.

Mr Obeid, you have not answered the question.

MR WATSON: I’ll try the third time. Mr Obeid, if a Minister created a mining tenement over a friend’s property – – –

… Read rest of morning transcript here … some 64 pages

… and afternoon transcript here … some 58 pages.

As can be seen it’s a tedious read and the rest of the transcript is similar with periods of clear questions and answers that does get to the heart of the matter.

If everybody was to read these transcripts and become exposed to what actually happens in a court of law, or in an ICAC inquiry as presented in these transcripts – one would far better understand how criminals use the law for protection of their rights under the laws available and granted.

TV drama is not a true reflection of real law – it was only reported in the media yesterday the request to have Obeid’s and his family assets frozen to protect assets stolen from the NSW taxpayers.  The Obeid’s and associated parties have had two odd years notice that the new NSW Government were coming for them.  Any sane person would have made preparations to protect assets and destroy incriminating evidence.

The same happened with Mike Williamson and the HSU allegations … they actually arrested Williamson as he was removing evidence from the HSU offices …

What evidence was destroyed, and assets hidden in that interim period between talk of an arrest and the actual arrest?

In the Obeid inquiry there are no arrests at the moment, and all the evidence being produced at this inquiry is to prove a case exists against Obeid and others for their corrupt behaviour and if ICAC finds there is a case to answer – criminal and civil court proceedings will follow.

This corruption has a very long way to go and the public will lose interest very quickly as the inquiry bogs down ans the process of law is offered to the criminals involved.

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