Government rejects call for Bombers probe

The federal government has rejected calls for a Senate inquiry into the investigation of the Essendon supplements debacle.


Sports minister Greg Hunt on Friday said his department had not received any new information that would warrant an inquiry.

He added the opposition had agreed with the decision.

Former Essendon football manager Danny Corcoran, one of the key figures in the supplements saga, said he was disappointed, but not surprised.

“After the number of bodies, authorities and tribunals this has been before, it’s probably exhausted that,” Corcoran told AAP.

“But it’s a little bit disappointing in some aspects, in the sense that a statutory authority such as ASADA – and we’re seeing a lot of it around the world at the moment – should be left to do its work totally unhindered by any government, person or sporting organisation.

“They must be independent and that’s where I think this should have been looked at by minister Hunt.

“To protect the anti-doping architecture in this country is incredibly important.

“Everyone wants to get the drug cheats – all of us.”

There have been long-standing calls for a government inquiry into the supplements saga, in particular the joint investigation involving ASADA and the AFL.

Those calls were heightened late last month when audio emerged of a meeting at Essendon in August, 2013, at the height of the crisis.

Corcoran, coach James Hird, chairman Paul Little and assistant coach Mark Thompson were in the meeting.

The audio laid bare the feeling of betrayal, fury and frustration at Essendon, plus the confusion about how the process was playing out.

In a statement, minister Hunt said he had taken note of the material that came out when News Corp Australia made the audio recording public.

“After review and due consideration, and in light of the exhaustive review processes already applied to this matter, the department has advised that there is no new or substantive information in the material supplied that would justify a further investigation,” he said.

“I have accepted that advice.

“Labor also supports this position and, on Wednesday during Senate estimates, Senator Don Farrell said his party was not convinced a Senate inquiry was necessary.”