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Call for Government Accountability for $100M Grants Scandal

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Shadow Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus is calling for the Prime Minister to show leadership and fire former Sports Minister Bridget McKenzie.

The National Audit Office has released a report this week showing $100 million in sports grants last year overwhelmingly went to marginal Coalition seats, or seats that the Coalition was targeting in the May election.

The scheme was thrust into the spotlight in February when high-profile Liberal Mayo candidate Georgina Downer presented the Yankalilla Bowls Club a novelty cheque with her face on it using $127,000 in Government money. The seat of Mayo held by current Centre Alliance MP, Rebekha Sharkie.

A Senate Estimates Committee in April heard Ms Downer did not make any written representations to Sport Australia for the club.

This week's National Audit Office report reveals Sports Minister Bridget McKenzie had no legal right to authorise the grants.

The Federal Government insists no rules were broken.

Former Liberal candidate for Mayo Georgina Downer giving a novelty cheque to Yankalilla Bowling Club last February. Picture: Georgina Downer / Facebook