“Former CEO of ESCOSA Dr.Paul Kerin has confirmed that prior to the last election the Under Treasurer told him the Weatherill Government was considering the privatisation of parts of SA Water,” said Shadow Treasurer Rob Lucas.
In evidence to the Budget and Finance Committee Dr.Kerin was asked whether he was aware KPMG had been appointed in October 2012 to look at the privatization of some SA Water assets and he outlined a meeting he had with the Under Treasurer Brett Rowse:
“He told me that the Government was considering it……….”
Dr.Kerin was asked which SA Water assets the Weatherill Government was considering privatising and in particular whether it included the desalination plant;
“I don’t think I should answer that question unless the Under Treasurer has already disclosed that to Parliament because then I would be disclosing information that I don’t think I should.”
“It is now absolutely clear that the Weatherill Government was secretly considering the privatisation of some SA Water assets and not only paid KPMG $100,000 for advice but Treasury were consulting other agencies like ESCOSA on the issue,” said Mr Lucas.
“The hypocrisy of Premier Weatherill and Treasurer Koutsantonis is now starkly revealed as they continue to claim they oppose privatisation and accuse the Liberal Party of supporting the privatisation of SA Water.
“Labor’s privatisation record already includes the SE forests, Lotteries Commission and the MAC.
“It is also interesting to note that the work on SA Water commenced in October 2012 almost immediately after Mr.Weatherill became Premier.
“Now that they have been caught out it is time for Mr.Weatherill and Mr.Koutsantonis to finally admit their secret plan and apologise to SA families for continually misleading them on the issue.”