Nsw Procurement Board
Corruption at RailCorp ‘endemic’ says Independent Commission Against Corruption (WS), CORRUPTION in NSW’s RailCorp is widespread and not confined to a few “bad apples”, the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) said today. The ICAC has recommended sweeping changes across the organisation. “The very structure of the organisation and the way it operates allows and encourages corruption,” ICAC Commissioner Jerrold Cripps QC said in a report released today. ICAC’s eighth and final report on its Investigation into bribery and fraud at RailCorp says the investigation “exposed an extraordinary extent of public sector corruption”. “Corrupt employees appeared to be confident that they would not be caught or if they were, that not much would happen to them,” Mr Cripps said in the report. The Commission said the decision to outsource the provision of certain goods and services “in an environment of dysfunctional markets, a lack of internal firewalls within procurement positions, the inability of management to effectively manage the procurement process, and the weak oversight of the RailCorp board of an activity fraught with corruption risks” allowed widespread corruption to develop. The report said corruption extended beyond individuals identified in the ICAC investigation. Record-keeping at RailCorp was described as “shambolic”. The ICAC has made 40 corruption prevention recommendations directed at RailCorp, the RailCorp board and the minister for transport. They include RailCorp reducing procurement risk “by ensuring that it buys only what it can adequately monitor”.
The creation of firewalls was also recommended to “remove end-to-end control of procurement by single individuals”. The report called for overall managerial effectiveness in RailCorp’s asset management group to be improved, and for corruption risk management strategies to be implemented. Other major investigations into RailCorp’s operations conducted since 1992 have all found corruption. “Ultimately, responsibility for preventing corruption in this critical public organisation is shared by RailCorp’s CEO, the RailCorp board and the minister for transport,” the report concluded.,