Evidence at IBAC further uncovered behaviour by key personnel at Metro and V/Line that involved collusion with cleaning contractors to defraud taxpayers and put public health at risk.
There was deliberate contamination of carriages cleaned as part of a new product trial (Zoono, May 2020).
Zoono claims to be “the next generation of antibacterial technology”, but it didn’t have a fair chance under the Andrews Labor Government.
Unbelievably, senior Metro officials inappropriately informed the existing contractor about which carriages and which surfaces were cleaned with the new product, and also which carriages were to be audited and therefore which surfaces had to be contaminated with filth.
Despite this sabotage Zoono has found a role. They knew the product would reduce cleaning hours and therefore, reduce the revenue to the contractors. Metro received bonuses and additional payments for cleaning during this period.
Witnesses coming before the Inquiry have demonstrated a convenient and apparently deliberate form of amnesia when confronted with evidence of taped conversations pointing directly to the corrupt behaviour.
It is incomprehensible that Daniel Andrews, his Transport Infrastructure Minister, Jacinta Allan, and Minister for Transport, Ben Carroll, continue to protect the incompetent V/Line Board which allowed this corruption to occur.
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Public Transport (Metropolitan), David Davis:
“The public expect taxpayers’ money to be used properly. They expect cleaning to be undertaken to the highest standards given the pandemic we have all lived through. They don’t expect that Daniel Andrews and his ministers would be asleep at the wheel and fail to ensure proper oversight.
“Surely during a life-threatening pandemic the maintenance of high cleaning standards and ensuring no waste occurs within cleaning contracts is critical – why have Andrews and his ministers failed?”