Government fails to take faults in ACoBA seriously

25 January 2018

The Government is failing to take the faults in the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments (ACoBA) seriously, the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee (PACAC) states in its fourth special report.

ACoBA remains part of an ineffectual system for regulating the 'revolving door' between the public and private sector and the Government appears not to take the matter seriously.

The Committee's original report published in April last year stated that the regulatory system for scrutinising the post public employment of former Ministers and civil servants is ineffectual and does not inspire public confidence or respect. The situation had got worse since the Committee had last looked at the issue in 2012.

The Government has responded to each of the report's recommendations but the Committee considers that they are inadequate given the seriousness of the issues raised in the report and their potential to undermine public confidence.

The Committee inquiry revealed numerous gaps in ACoBA's monitoring process with insufficient attention paid to the principles that should govern business appointments. The failures of governments in this regard have damaged public trust in politics and public institutions and led to repeated scandals.

The Committee have decided to relaunch the inquiry at a future date.

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