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Issue #1705      October 7, 2015

Organiser entirely vindicated

The Construction Division of the CFMEU has welcomed the decision of the ACT Director of Public Prosecutions to offer no evidence against ACT organiser Johnny Lomax when his case comes up in court on October 19.

CFMEU Construction national secretary Dave Noonan said that the decision meant that Mr Lomax – who was charged with blackmail for negotiating an EBA that meant an employer was required to pay higher wages – was entirely vindicated.

“We argued from the outset that Mr Lomax was doing nothing other than advocating higher wages for the union’s members – which is in fact his job,” he said.

Mr Noonan said the use of criminal law to smear the work of Mr Lomax and the union is a new low in Australian industrial relations.

“It has harmed the reputation of Mr Lomax and has been deeply upsetting for his family.” Mr Noonan said that union would be seeking answers from the police regarding their pursuit of this case, when it was obvious it had no chance of succeeding.

“Everyone should be concerned at the enormous waste of taxpayers’ money when the resources of the Australian Federal Police are used in this way, particularly given there are more pressing issues of national significance for them to focus on.

“Equally, we should be concerned that in a democracy such as ours, the police are not used as tools to further political agendas.

“Johnny Lomax should never have been charged with blackmail.”

Next article – Medicare – Privatisation behind rhetoric

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