Legislative Council: Thursday, March 23, 2023


Electoral Fraud

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK (15:09): My question is to the Attorney-General regarding the Electoral Commission. Which of the Electoral Commissioner's investigations on alleged photo fraud and illegal practices during the 2022 local government period has he been briefed on, and what advice can he provide to the council?

The Hon. K.J. MAHER (Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Attorney-General, Minister for Industrial Relations and Public Sector) (15:09): I thank the honourable member for her question. I have been briefed quite some time ago but very, very broadly, and I don't think I have any further or better information than is in the public arena. I am happy to talk to my colleague the Minister for Local Government, who is responsible for the Local Government (Elections) Act and the Adelaide City Council act, which are the two pieces of legislation that oversee local government elections, to see if there is any more to bring back about the current state of the investigations.

I have semi-regular meetings with the Electoral Commissioner. The Electoral Commissioner, and the legislation that enables that, are part of the Attorney-General's portfolio. For the particular functions the minister refers to, it is not uncommon that a statutory body may report in different functions to different ministers—in the case with local government elections it is the local government minister. As I have said, I don't think that, in the very brief conversation that formed part of a much more general briefing some time ago, I have any better information than is in the public arena.