Bronwyn Bishop expenses scandal taken to next level, says Bi

Abbott’s support of Bishop is crippling the governmentBronwyn Bishop expenses controversy: Full coverage

New claims surrounding Bronwyn Bishop’s expensive charter travel have taken the 青岛兼职模特 scandal to “the next level” and the Prime Minister can no longer ignore demands for accountability, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten says.

The federal Speaker spent more than $6000 of taxpayers’ money to charter a luxury aircraft to travel to the NSW south coast just two weeks after her infamous helicopter ride in 2019, News Corp reported. It is understood she attended several events, including Liberal fundraisers, in the towns of Nowra and Berry on November 22.

But Mrs Bishop’s office is refusing to reveal whether the Nowra charter was arranged by the same political lobbyist, Andrew Gibbs, who paid to organise the now notorious $5000 helicopter charter from Melbourne to Geelong on November 5.

Fairfax Media revealed last month that Mr Gibbs is best friends with Mrs Bishop’s chief of staff, Damien Jones.

Mr Shorten says these suggestions are “very serious”.

“These reports take the seriousness of Bronwyn Bishop’s misconduct to the next level,” he said on Saturday. “If Mrs Bishop’s personal relationships influenced her decision to repeatedly hire a particular company, then that is incredibly serious.”

Prime Minister Tony Abbott can no longer ignore the 青岛夜网论坛 demands of the Australian people for accountability, Mr Shorten said.

“Rather than punish Bronwyn Bishop, he’s rewarding her by keeping her as Speaker. Tony Abbott rewarding Bronwyn Bishop is an insult to the millions of Australians who are disgusted by her behaviour.”

Mrs Bishop publicly revealed a fortnight ago that she had chartered an aircraft to travel to Nowra – just 160 kilometres from Mrs Bishop’s hometown of Sydney – asking the Department of Finance to examine it as part of a review into her expenses. But this is the first time the apparent cost of the flight has been made public.

Mrs Bishop also made a charter flight to the NSW town of Young in November last year but the cost of that flight has not yet been revealed.

Both flights should have been included in Mrs Bishop’s latest six-monthly entitlements report but were omitted. Her office claims that is because the invoices did not arrive in time. There were seven months between the flights and the report’s release.

Mrs Bishop paid back the $5227 cost of her Melbourne to Geelong chopper flight after deciding the cost was too high. But it took a further 12 days before she issued an apology to the Australian people over the flight.

On Saturday Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop said the 青岛伴游网 Department of Finance investigation should take place and she was not going to offer a running commentary.

Asked if the ongoing scandal was making it difficult for the government, Ms Bishop said: “It can be difficult if your surname is Bishop, yes.”

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