The Rann Government’s increasingly desperate attempts to defend Attorney-General Michael Atkinson had now descended to Goebbels-like levels of distorted propaganda, according to Shadow Treasurer Rob Lucas.
“The Rann Government has been severely embarrassed in the last week because three senior public servants have explicitly denied claims by Attorney-General Michael Atkinson that Kate Lennon kept two separate sets of accounts in the ‘stashed cash’ affair,” Mr Lucas said today.
“In response, Minister Paul Holloway has sought to selectively quote from Hansard transcripts to defend the increasingly beleaguered Attorney-General.
The complete – non-selective – Hansard transcript from Ray Bown (Dept of Treasury and Finance) and Andrew Swanson (A-G’s Dept) shows the following:
Hon Rob Lucas and Mr Ray Bown:
Lucas: Have you found a second set of accounts?
Lucas: Do you believe that a second set of accounts and books exist?
Bown: No; I do not necessarily think that they do.
Hon Rob Lucas and Mr Andrew Swanson:
Lucas: … Do you agree with Mr Bown that there was no second set of accounts, ledgers and books etc. being kept?
Swanson: There was no second set of formal accounts as such?
Lucas: That is all right. That is all I want. In relation to the issue of monthly reports to the AG, you are aware of the –
Swanson: Sorry can I just clarify that? There was no second set of financial statements. There was only ever one set of financial statements. There was only ever one set of financial statements that were recorded.
Lucas: Books? Was there a second set of books?
Swanson: There was a set of information which was maintained that simply monitored the movement of funds into and out of the account.
Lucas: Were there two sets of ledgers being kept?
Swanson: No; there was only one ledger.
“Attorney General Atkinson’s credibility is already in tatters. Minister Holloway has now joined him.”
Note: To allow you to decide for yourself who is saying what, Minister Holloway’s release is attached for comparison.