The New South Wales opposition has called on state Liberal MP Daryl Maguire to resign from politics immediately after secret phone recordings of him discussing potential Chinese developer “dividends” were played at a Sydney corruption inquiry.
Conservative Party leader Cory Bernardi belled the cat last year on Chinese influence over Australia’s political process calling out then Labor Senator Sam Dastyari’s links to influential Chinese-Australians.
The Guardian reports, Daryl Maguire stood down from the Liberal party on Friday night after fronting an Independent Commission Against Corruption inquiry but will remain in state parliament as an independent.
The recorded conversations, played at the ICAC hearing, were of Maguire trying to strike a deal in 2016 with then Canterbury City councillor Michael Hawatt in connection with Chinese developer Country Garden.
Maguire denied he was an agent for the Chinese developer but conceded he had “certainly sought to assist” them in purchasing sites in Australia and was “great friends” with the company’s Australian chief executive.
The Wagga Wagga MP later issued a short apology on his Facebook page for breaching the “strict code of conduct” and causing “distress and embarrassment” to the party.
Senator Bernardi has told Sydney radio station 2CH's Kel Richards calling out Chinese influence is just one of a number of achievements the Conservative Party can be proud of in its short 18 month history.
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