The Albanese Government will appoint Mr Dennis Richardson AC, a former Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Department of Defence and Director-General of Security, to conduct a review of integrity and governance arrangements for the management of regional processing contracts by the Department of Home Affairs.
In recent weeks a number of serious issues relating to the governance of contracting related to regional processing have been placed on the public record.
They merit detailed and thorough examination.
The review will consider governance practices and these allegations in the wider context of serious issues that have emerged over many years. It will not canvass the policy of regional processing itself.
In particular, it will consider:
- Any integrity concerns about contracting arrangements regarding regional processing, whether public or otherwise
- The Department’s governance arrangements, oversight processes and systems for managing offshore processing, current and historic, including in relation to the engagement of sub-contractors by head contractors
- Any other related concerns regarding arrangements for regional processing administration.
The review will:
- Review the handling of any matters in the public realm and detail any matters of concern not in the public realm
- Make recommendations to ensure the Department of Home Affairs’ processes and systems meet Australian standards for propriety and probity, and
- Make referrals of matters to appropriate authorities for further investigation where necessary.
The review will report to the Minister for Home Affairs and the Minister for Finance and for subsequent consideration by the National Security Committee of Cabinet.