Friday February 10 2006 9:15am WST
For Immediate Release
"The Immigration Minister Senator Amanda Vanstone should immediately make public all details of who exactly in the latest round of DIMIA 'lock-em-up and kick-em-out scandals' has fallen victim to the tentacles of her bureaucrats, and in what way they fell foul to her extremist and life-endangering Department," WA Rights Group Project SafeCom commented this morning, and spokesman Jack H Smit added, "and not leave the investigations to ABC Lateline or reporters such as The Age's Andra Jackson, who revealed the Cornelia Rau scandals in January last year."
"The dealings of DIMIA are now well and truly of the highest public interest, and all energy should now be mobilised so citizens, interest groups and NGO's can find their role and start to develop concise, safe and sound strategies in protecting vulnerable Australian citizens and residents from a government department that may well be compared to the Italian Mafia gangs who snatch people and make them disappear," spokesman Jack H Smit commented.
"DIMIA is so dysfunctional that it's damaged and probably unrecoverable for another decade, and as long as the Prime Minister stubbornly keeps sponsoring inhumane policies, the DIMIA will be unable to redeem itself: at the heart of its sickness is the demand that mandatory detention stays in place. We saw that when the West Papuans were shipped to the remoteness of Christmas Island last month, and we saw it when that same Department booked 140 aircraft seats to forcibly deport one person from Australia last month."
"It has come to the stage where the Ombudsman uses words like "bad luck" in his report if DIMIA makes you disappear. As Project SafeCom has stated on many occasions since the Cornelia Rau revelations, everyone, and that includes especially refugees and asylum seekers, should be protected from falling into the claws of DIMIA, and the latest report of the Ombudsman once more strengthens the case for refugee assessment to be taken out of the hands of DIMIA and for all supervision of this process to be put into the hands of the Human Rights and Equal Opportunities Commissioner."
For more information:
Jack H Smit
Project SafeCom Inc.
[phone number posted]