The mail carrier’s chief executive has been asked to stand aside after revelations of luxury watches gifted to executives, but the company is facing much deeper crises.Much of the week’s drama has returned to some form of the same question: Is the national postal service completely out of touch with community expectations?
New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian has survived two no-confidence motions in state parliament, as her former partner Daryl Maguire admitted on Wednesday to running a “cash for visas” business out of his parliamentary office. The no-confidence motion in the lower house failed along party lines, but in the upper house Legislative Council president John Ajaka used his casting vote to break the 20-20 deadlock in favour of his party’s leader. Crossbenchers withdrew support for government legislation unless the Premier steps aside over the potential awareness of former Liberal MP Maguire’s corrupt behavior. In testimony to the Independent Commission Against Corruption, Maguire admitted receiving cash drop-offs of up to $20,000 for operating a cash-for-visas scam, and also charged ($) a Chinese government delegation for an opportunity to meet then-premier Barry O’Farrell. In an intercepted phone recording, property developer Joseph Alha told Maguire he wanted to set up “policy development meetings” with Berejiklian. Maguire said he could not recall if he arranged the meeting. He will continue giving evidence today.
The NSW state government will hold off on plans to ease health safeguards and restrictions ($), after recording 14 new Covid-19 infections on Wednesday, including 11 locally transmitted cases. Nine cases were linked to the Lakemba GP cluster, the source of which is still unknown. Meanwhile, Victoria recorded seven new cases and five deaths. There were turbulent scenes in Shepparton as hundreds crowded into queues to be tested after a truck driver from Melbourne spread the virus into the town weeks earlier. Authorities say the man, who has a worker permit to travel regionally, initially omitted some details of his journey in discussions with contact tracers. Police are investigating whether any criminal offences had been committed.
Tasmanian independent senator Jacqui Lambie has warned Prime Minister Scott Morrison she would reveal details of a secret deal made in order to win her support for the repeal of the so-called medevac law if he did not do so himself by the end of the year. Senator Lambie has so far refused to disclose details of the negotiations for securing her vote to repeal the law, which empowered doctors to remove sick refugees from offshore detention for treatment. In an interview with 7.30, Senator Lambie said the nature of the deal would be made clear by the end of the year. “And if the Prime Minister doesn't do it, I will,” she said. “So he can go and threaten me with jail or whatever he likes on a piece of paper. I don't care. But if he doesn't tell you by the end of the year, I will.”
Twitter has suspended fake accounts purporting to be African American supporters of US President Donald Trump. Darren Linvill, a professor at Clemson University who specialises in disinformation on social media, published some examples of the fake accounts on Twitter, accusing them of using “digital black face”. Since he began tracking the accounts on Saturday, Linvill found more than two dozen accounts that collectively had 265,000 retweets or Twitter mentions.