September 22, 2011
Police are investigating after Australia’s Aboriginal Affairs department was found to have spent thousands of dollars of public money on supplies, reports The Australian.
The department spent around AU$80,000 ($79, 712, €58 775) on 200 toner cartridges between May and July. A member of the department stepped down last night after the expense came to light.
During a hearing yesterday, Victoria-based supplier Universal Cartridges is said to offered incentives including vouchers for Liquorland and JB HI-Fi. Pauline Peel, Deputy Chief Executive of the Aboriginal Affairs division, said she had been unaware of the expenditure.
Liberal frontbencher and committee chairman Rob Lucas said during the hearing: “The Labor government and Aboriginal Affairs Minister Grace Portolesi need to assure taxpayers that some public servants are not paying inflated prices for printer cartridges whilst at the same time receiving personal benefits which they have not disclosed.”
The department is also said to have spent more than AU$1 million on consultants in just two years.
The incident is remarkably similar to another case which took place earlier this year. Several other government departments were found to have accepted bribes for purchasing supplies at inflated prices from Consumable Management Group. One worker was found to purchase almost 40 years worth of toner in a single order.
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