Royal Commission Lies Exposed

In January 2014, I was front-page news in relation to stories about systemic bribery of union officials in the construction industry.

The stories featured in these reports gave Abbott the rationale that he needed to call for a Royal Commission into union affairs.

A Royal Commission that has filled the coffers of law firm Minter Ellison with a handsome $17 million. And filled the pockets of Counsel Assisting, Jeremy Stoljar, with $3.6 million for a year's work. All taxpayers' money.

The strange case of Andrew Zaf

For those of you who don't recall the details, the report about me quoted a man called Andrew Zaf, who claimed that he had given me a free roof to buy industrial peace.

Zaf also claimed that he had written a cheque for $10,000 (or perhaps $12,000) to pay for Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams to visit Australia - and that he had only done this under coercion from the CFMEU.

All hell broke loose, and I was called unprintable things.

Bull-nose bullshit

Under cross-examination in the Royal Commission, Mr Zaf was forced to tell the truth. It was proven that both these stories had no foundation in truth.

He insisted that he 'gave' me a bull-nose roof. Problem was, though, that bull-nose roofs did not exist at the time the roof was installed. In addition, the man who installed the roof gave evidence that the roof which Zaf referred to is not the roof that he installed.

Gerry Adams trip to Australia

As for Zaf funding Gerry Adams' trip, Adams wasn't allowed into Australia until after the Northern Ireland Good Friday Agreement was signed in 1998. His ticket to visit Australia was actually purchased by the Sinn Fein office in Belfast.

Under oath, John Little from Perth – who headed an Irish support group at the time of Adams' visit - stated that the Adams trip was coordinated by Irish organisations throughout Australia, and that Mr Zaf had no involvement in the tour or his airfares.

And finally, art associate of Zaf came forward in November 2014 to say that Mr Zafs evidence was `bullshit'. He also said that Zaf stabbed himself and tried to pass it off to the police - who didn't believe him - that someone else had attacked him.

Royal Commissioner forced to discount 'evidence'

Due to the unreliability of Zaf, Commissioner Dyson Heydon agreed to leave out any reference to Zafs allegations in his interim report. No findings were made against me in relation to Zafs evidence.

In fact, the Royal Commission failed to make any findings in relation to CFMEU corruption - including those allegations made against me and also that NSW officials took cash bribes.

Actually, the Commission eventually showed that many of the claims made by the ABC/Fairfax Media investigation (which sparked the Royal Commission) or claims made in the Herald Sun were either not true or unsubstantiated.

Abbott's media stooges look the other way

But there were no headlines in the newspapers or feature stories on the 7.30 Report telling us this. Why?

Because the campaign against the Union is not about the truth or solving problems. It's about painting the Union in a bad light, in their attempts to smash our ability to organise on the job.

They haven't succeeded and they won't succeed. It's going to be another tough year, and we can expect many more lies.

But as our mothers warned us when we were kids, lies will only get you so far.

Abbott and those doing his dirty work obviously didn't listen to their mothers.

John Setka