Just another Wilkie publicity stunt

28 April, 2015

Andrew Wilkie's latest claim about the Geelong Star is just another publicity stunt from a headline seeking MP, said Senator Richard Colbeck, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture.

Senator Colbeck said it was appropriate for the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) Commission to consider advice from stakeholders before deciding total allowable catches for Commonwealth Fisheries.

"Andrew Willkie's suggestion that the process of setting total allowable catches is somehow rigged is completely false. It is just another cheap attempt for him to steal a headline," Senator Colbeck said.

"The SPF Resource Assessment Group (SPFRAG) and South East Management Advisory Committee (SEMAC) provide advice to the AFMA Commission about the management of the fishery."

"These groups are made up of members who are either engaged in or have experience in the fishery and they are obliged to declare any conflict of interest."

In 2012 the Commonwealth Ombudsman concluded that AFMA had undertaken a range of remedial and corrective steps to address the issue, which was previously raised by Wilkie in a similar stunt.

AFMA's current arrangements in place for management advisory committees and resource assessment groups reflect the steps undertaken in 2012.

280415 Just another Wilkie publicity stunt
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