Free ride stops for corrupt MPs
Corrupt former NSW ministers are being stripped of their parliamentary pensions.
Corrupt former ministers Ian Macdonald and Eddie Obeid may have to repay NSW taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars under a move announced by Premier Gladys Berejiklian.
“The corrupt actions of former Labor politicians Eddie Obeid and Ian Macdonald constitute a complete betrayal of public trust,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“These changes provide a strong reminder that politicians are here to serve the people of NSW, not to serve themselves.”
The legislation will strip the parliamentary pensions of MPs convicted of a serious offence during their time in office, even if they quit before charges are laid.
At the moment, MPs convicted of a offences that can carry years of imprisonment still get to keep their pensions if they are not charged while in office.
Mr Obeid was charged after he left Parliament in 2011, and now faces losing his lifetime annual pension of over $120,000 a year.
Reports say Mr Macdonald took a portion of his pension entitlement as a lump sum upon quitting politics in 2010, receiving $1.3 million, or the equivalent of ten years’ worth of his $135,545 annual pension.
The legislation would strip Macdonald of any ongoing annual payments and a portion of the lump sum.
Mr Macdonald was found guilty of criminal misconduct this year after he awarded a lucrative coal licence to a union mate, while Mr Obeid was convicted in relation to lobbying over commercial leases in which his family held an interest.