Why is it being reported that Greyhound Racing NSW has been referred to ICAC?

The age-old adage in politics and life is that a lie often enough becomes a fact.

The art is often in making the mistruth believable.

It is an art that anti-racing activists have perfected.

They will focus on a narrow segment of a story, quote, or statistic and use that repeatedly without context, attributing unintended meaning to what was once true but is now a mistruth now that it is detached from its context.

The quote “Repeat a lie often enough, and it becomes the truth”, is a law of propaganda often attributed to the Nazi Joseph Goebbels.

NSW greyhound racing participants experienced their own share of propaganda pointed against them by their own government during the ill-fated NSW greyhound ban.

And so we get to the point of this article.

, which also owns the greyhound affiliate site The Greyhound Recorder, the affiliate sites and Punters, the sport betting affiliate site Codebet, and a sizable portion of the online bookmaker Betr, is the owner of The Daily Telegraph.

It would be fair to say Newscorp has a vested interest in racing and wagering.

So it sparked interest that the Daily Telegraph has now run three stories in the past few months suggesting that Greyhound () and/or it's CEO, , are under investigation or have been referred for investigation to the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption ().

The NSW ICAC's scope of involvement is front and centre on it's own website homepage.

“Our mission is to combat corruption and improve the of the NSW public sector”.

This is where it gets interesting, as the Daily Telegraph has three times reported that “A spokesman for NSW Gaming and Racing Minister David Harris confirmed a complaint made by a GRNSW whistleblower and former executive had been referred to the anti-corruption agency (ICAC).”

We're not for a minute suggesting that the Daily Telegraph is wrong in publishing this or misrepresenting what was said to them, but surely the NSW Racing Minister knows that GRNSW is not actually a branch of government.

The Daily Telegraph's Annette Sharp, who was the author of all three articles, reported that “To ensure this matter is thoroughly investigated and out of an abundance of caution, Minister Harris has referred the allegations to the Independent Commission Against Corruption and the NSW Ombudsman.”

Now, while the NSW Ombudsman may have jurisdiction over the complaints raised, the ICAC does not.

GRNSW is not a branch of government by its own design.

GRNSW is a body corporate that is granted five-year operating licences by the NSW Government to run greyhound racing in NSW, under the Greyhound Racing Act 2017.

The last licence was granted in 2022 by Racing Minister Kevin Anderson and doesn't expire until 2027.

GRNSW was deliberately as an arm's-length entity from the NSW Government as opposed to a government department or entity.

Now remember, ICAC only has the power to investigate the public sector, or, in other words, government entities and their people.

GRNSW does not fall under the scope of ICAC.

To be entirely sure that GRNSW was outside the reach of ICAC, we contacted them.

Georgia Pelle, the ICAC Acting Deputy Manager of Assessments, responded, saying, “Whilst the Commission does not comment on its operational activities, I note that GRNSW is an independent body and is not a NSW public authority for the purposes of the ICAC Act.

“The information provided in your email does not appear to involve allegations concerning a NSW public authority or NSW public official, and so we are unable to pursue it.”

The question becomes now: why would current Racing Minister Harris make a statement saying GRNSW was being referred to ICAC?

The Daily Telegraph, having received the remark from Racing Minister Harris, has now run the fact that GRNSW is being investigated by the ICAC three times over the past few months, and anti-racing activists are using the “fact” in almost all anti-racing propaganda.

Outside the three Daily Telegraph articles and anti-racing activist's propaganda, the “fact” that GRNSW is being investigated by the ICAC has not been reported anywhere else.

The truth is, GRNSW is not being investigated by the ICAC, as it has no jurisdiction to investigate them.

But you will only read that here.

The “ICAC investigation” is pure propaganda.

The question we all need to ask is: why is the propaganda being promoted, and for what or whose purpose?

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Rob Macaulay
Rob Macaulay
9 months ago

Wow! Totally accurate article Kevin Pitstock, and much better research by you than the reporter at the Telegraph! The question you pose in the last sentence is the very heart of the matter.
Rob Macaulay