Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin again misled the public about progress under the Strategic Indigenous Housing and Infrastructure Program in Federal Parliament yesterday.
“We now have houses being built in hundreds of locations right across the remote parts of the Northern Territory,” Minister Macklin said.
Shadow Minister for Indigenous Affairs Nigel Scullion said the project would in fact only deliver new houses in 16 communities with renovations in a further 57.
“It’s not even true to say that hundreds of houses are under construction in those 16 communities, because as of May 25 this year, only 83 new houses were under construction in six communities,” Senator Scullion said.
“This is yet another example of the Minister having no idea about the status of her program, or deliberately misleading people about what’s been achieved, despite the well-documented problems most recently highlighted during Senate Estimates.
Following an embarrassing gaffe which saw the Minister announcing that everything was on track the day before the contract of one of the three program delivery partners was terminated, the Minister’s departmental secretary said:
“It would not have been necessarily the case that the Minister’s office or the Minister would have been aware, when that first release went out, that we were planning the very next day to terminate the Earth Connect contract.”
“Jenny Macklin has demonstrated time and time again she has absolutely no idea what’s going on with this program, and it’s time for her to be moved aside so someone else can get on with the job,” Senator Scullion said.
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Minister misleads _again_ on Indigenous housing program 17.6.10.pdf