“…comments made by a television reporter, Mr Ross
Coulthart, from Nine Network Australia Pty Limited (Channel 9),
who in late January 2001 contacted the [ICAC] Commission raising
concerns … about the Commission investigating Mr Kite’s complaint… Mr Coulthart, made the following remarks:
“All too often in Australian public life, people with the courage and the decency to raise concerns about something you, the public, should know about get shafted for their trouble. All too often, whistleblowers suffer terribly because their honesty, their motives, even their sanity gets questioned by the institution that’s under attack. Until this amazing piece of paper fell into his lap late last year, that’s exactly what had happened to John Kite”.
“This whole story raises very serious questions about the way our democracy treats people who try to do the right thing by blowing the whistle. The whistleblower’s world can be a very secretive and frightening one, especially when the institutions which should help them fail to do so.”
“This smoking gun memo’s revelations, however, have now forced a fresh ICAC investigation into John Kite’s claims. The way the ICAC responds to this fresh investigation into its own conduct will be a crucial test of its accountability to the public. For it would be all too easy for any anti-corruption watchdog to dismiss such a smoking gun document as a fake without a full and proper investigation.” Ross Coulthart.
Excerpt from ICAC Report. Meteor. John Slattery Q.C.