Rugby Australia intend to sack Israel Folau, NRL rule out a switch of codes

Rugby Australia says they intend to sack Israel Folau “In absence of compelling and mitigating factors, it is our intention to terminate his contract”.

This dents Australia’s chances in the Rugby World Cup later this year, but they appear to have little choice, after Folau’s homophobic, forniphibic, idolphobic, fibaphobic, drunkaphobic social media post.

The NRL has also stated that they would not allow Folau to return to league – NRL won’t allow sacked Israel Folau to rejoin the NRL

Any hopes of a rugby league homecoming for fallen Wallaby Israel Folau have been dashed after ARL Commission chairman Peter Beattie sensationally banned him from the NRL on Thursday night.

While up to nine NRL clubs may have the financial means to sign Folau, the governing body has ruled out allowing them to take a risk on the controversial star ending any hopes the former Kangaroo could seek refuge in the code which gave him his start.

“Israel Folau fails the NRL’s inclusiveness culture which is a policy strongly supported by the Australian Rugby League Commission,” Beattie told the Daily Telegraph on Thursday night.

“As a game, we have a clear position to be inclusive.

“From our point of view rugby union has made a decision that clearly rugby league would support.

“The ARLC therefore would not support his registration to play in the NRL.”

Folau is finding that ‘free speech’ can have consequences, especially when one ignores contractual agreements not to repeat making divisive public statements. He said that just about everyone will go to hell if they don’t repent (which is a ludicrous concept), but his lack of repenting will guaranetee’s his sports career will go to hell.



Ardern: “Because it was in the agreement and they’re contracts”, except…

Going by the Question Time transcript of the first few questions (there doesn’t seem to be video available yet) it was a bit of a shambles today. Perhaps everyone had been unsettled by a pointless waste of time going on about a baby somewhere else in the word – it could be chaos with a more local birth in a month or two.

One short exchange was more effective than the rest of the shemozzle.

David Seymour: Why is the Government honouring existing irrigation contracts?

Rt Hon JACINDA ARDERN: Because it was in the agreement and they’re contracts.

David Seymour: Why is that different with partnership schools?

Rt Hon JACINDA ARDERN: We’ve given partnership schools an option, and the majority of them look to be taking it up.

That may be ACT’s only questions for the week, but Seymour did a good job with them. Ardern really set herself up.

Partnership Schools had contracts, but the Government pretty much ignored that and gave them a choice of ‘taking up’ one option, or being forced to shut down.

Serco to be barred from Mt Eden contract renewal

It’s not very surprising to hear that serco’s contract to run Mt Eden prison won’t be renewed at a contract break point in 2017 although Serco would be able to re-apply.

What I do find a bit surprising is that the news needed tol be searched out about, it was nowhere near headlines where I looked.

Newstalk ZB reports: Serco sacked from Mt Eden contract

Private prison operator Serco’s contract to run Mt Eden Corrections Facility will not be renewed.

The company’s contract is up for review, and Corrections chief executive Ray Smith has recommended that it should not be extended beyond next year.

Cabinet has now approved Smith’s recommendation.

Management of the jail was taken off the company after a string of incidents including prisoner assaults and fight clubs earlier this year.

Smith spoke to Serco’s Asia Pacific chief executive last night, and the focus on both sides is to manage the transition carefully.

“This is a practical, logical next step that’s available to us. We’re taking it. They understand that. For all parties now, what’s really important now…is that we want a safe prison.”

Corrections Minister Sam Lotu-Iiga said it doesn’t look as if Serco has grounds to challenge the decision, and it’s response has been pretty much to accept it.

Smith reports either party can seek to break the contract at the six year mark.

“I think the contract’s given us all the leavers that we needed and we’re using them as appropriate,” Smith said. “When you put these things together, one of the reasons you want a break point in it is because things do change.”

This is embarrassing for Serco in their first term of their contract, but they seriousy embarrassed the Government and Corrections – and seem to have been less than satisfactory in their care of prisoners – so this seems fair enough.

It will be interesting to see if a private option is sought, and if so whether Serco tender again. I expect they probaly would, but their record will have to be overcome with a convincing pitch.



Salvation Army say they tendered for gambling contract

Green MP Denise Roche claimed that the Salvation Army was awarded the problem gambling contract without tendering for it, but the Salvation  Army says this is wrong.

Oddly there isn’t any press release on this on the Green website, but this is at Scoop:

Problem gambling decision raises serious questions

Revelations that the Salvation Army was awarded Problem Gambling’s contract without seeking it raise serious questions about how that decision was made, the Green Party said today.

“The fact the Salvation Army said it did not tender for the contract to supply problem gambling services, yet was awarded it, adds weight to the allegation that the Problem Gambling Foundation were being punished for its opposition to the SkyCity deal,” said Green Party gambling spokesperson Denise Roche.

“Problem gambling is a serious problem in New Zealand and those fighting to deal with the problem should not be punished for doing their job.

“I think the Government and Health Ministry have serious questions to answer about how this contract was awarded.

“Have their been any other occasions when an organisation that did not even tender for a Government contract got it? It is a highly unusual situation.

“This decision needs to be revisited. New Zealanders will not accept this treatment of an advocate fighting to make life better for people.”

It seemed odd to be awarded a contract you hadn’t tendered for.

NZ Doctor have done some checking.

We tendered, says Salvation Army

But the head of the Salvation Army’s Addiction Services, Captain Gerry Walker, says this is wrong.

“We tendered for it,” he told New Zealand Doctor, “We tendered for what we believed we had the capacity and capability to deliver.”

Captain Walker says he does not know where the idea the Salvation Army was surprised to receive the contract had come from and that it had not described itself as the “national provider”.

“There is no surprise. We have been waiting to hear what we will be contracted to provide.”

I think there’s valid questions to be asked about the tender and how the service can best be provided but making this a highly politicised issue and making what appear to be incorrect claims is diverting from what should be examined.