The Premier must also include a request of the Governor-General to strip the former Liberal MP for Newcastle, Mr Tim Owen AM, of his Australian Honours award at the same time as Mr Baird’s request to withdraw the OAM awarded to Mr Eddie Obeid, Member for Shellharbour, Anna Watson, said today.
Ms Watson has today written to the Premier asking him to ensure any request of the Governor-General must also include a request that Mr Owen’s award should be stripped from him.
“I strongly support the Governor-General taking this action to strip Mr Obeid of his Australian Honours given the ICAC findings against him.
“However, I would also request that the same action be taken against the former Liberal Member for Newcastle, Mr Tim Owen AM. Mr Owen’s evidence to ICAC over dodgy election donations, as you know, led to his immediate resignation from the State Parliament, in disgrace.
“Surely, you and Mr Ward [who has also written to the Governor-General] would both agree that to ensure the integrity of the Australian Honours awards, it would be most appropriate for the Governor-General to also strip Mr Owen of his Australian Honours, which as an AM (Order of Australia (Military Division)), is a higher honour than that awarded to Mr Obeid as an OAM.
“I should appreciate your advice as soon as possible that any request you make of the Governor-General should also include the Australian Honour awarded to Mr Owen.
“This would provide the people of New South Wales with an assurance that your request is not party-politically motivated and is made to ensure the highest standards are maintained in the award of Australian Honours to citizens in this State”, Ms Watson tells the Premier in her letter.
15 December 2014