February 3, 2004 - Robin Chapple, Greens MLC for Mining & Pastoral Region has welcomed the Cooke Report into the Review of Environmental and Public Safety Impacts of Mining in the Kalgoorlie Area as an opportunity to highlight the behaviour of the former Government Department, DOME, now called DoIR, who Tony Cooke has exposed as inefficient, unprofessional and acquiescent to KCGM in Kalgoorlie.

The report recommends (recommendation 14) that an investigation take place into the activities of the Department by the Corruption and Crime Commission, although no allegations of bribery are mentioned. However, the Green's MLC recognises that there is a need to explore the reasons that the Department and KCGM agree with each other most of the time, and the relationship between former employees and their old colleagues once they enter the private sector.

'Recommendation 15 is seen as a positive step to answer the allegations that Parliament has been misinformed by various Ministers for Mines, through their Department, over a period of years. It may be that the Legislative Council Privileges Committee will be able to discover what, if any, misinformation has been recorded in Hansard, or if answers have been deliberately given that are half-truths,' stated Mr Chapple.

'The conclusions and recommendations contained in the report certainly justifies the work of the Williamstown Residents Committee and Boulder Action Group who had been criticised for their tireless work in exposing the problems connected with KCGM and DoIR. ' said Mr Chapple.

Mr Chapple said, 'The point is well taken that perhaps things could have been handled differently, but people connected with those organisations had little resources and loads of enthusiasm.'

We all should hope that this report would help all the parties to benefit from the gold industry, and to a more respectful and neighbourly future.

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