MPs push for in-depth integrity debate

·2-min read

Australia's anti-corruption commission proposal must face adequate parliamentary scrutiny despite protocol scrambling sitting week plans, crossbenchers say.

The Albanese government's long-awaited watchdog proposal was due to be presented this week but parliament was cancelled following the Queen's death.

Parliament will instead meet at the end of September to deal with outstanding legislation.

After campaigning on a promise to legislate a commission by the end of the year, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said he was confident the timetable had not changed.

But independent MP Helen Haines, who has long advocated for an integrity commission, said the government must allow adequate time for the parliament to consider the proposal.

"Setting up a body such as this is complicated and there will be important contributions to be made that will improve and strengthen the legislation put forward by the government," Dr Haines told AAP.

"For this commission to truly be the best it can be and have the trust of Australian people, we need time to debate these issues in the public sphere, through the committee process."

Dr Haines described the commission as a once-in-a-generation opportunity to restore integrity to parliament.

Fellow crossbencher Monique Ryan is also concerned by the shorter time frame to consider the legislation.

"It's really important that this legislation be complete (and) that it be above reproach," she told Sky News.

"The attorney-general (Mark Dreyfus) has told us previously it's very important to him that the legislation that ultimately gets enacted is as good as it possibly can be."

Dr Ryan said the legislation must be subjected to an appropriate review.

Crossbenchers have not yet seen the government's proposal for the commission.

Legislation to establish a national anti-corruption commission will be introduced during the next sitting week at the end of September, a spokesman for Mr Dreyfus told AAP.

The government is aiming for the bill to be passed this year.