Sunday, February 18, 2018


There is a certain bond among those who have served ... they are in effect  part of your wider family.   When one of them falls on hard times you are duty bound to help them to be best of your ability.

Not so it seems for now ex President of the New South Wales RSL (RSA) aided and abetted by members of his Executive.   Their  culture was one of helping themselves to the best of their ability at the expense of ordinary RSL members and then engaging in a deliberate plan to cover up their malfeasance.     This week the NSW Government released the report of former NSW Supreme Court Judge Patricia Bergin into the goings on by former members of the NSW RSL Executive.   Not short (700 pages) you can read it here.

It is a sordid tale of corruption, greed, fraud and the total misuse of public donations ... donations given by the general public for the welfare of returned servicemen and women.   The figures are in the millions and those involved in the rort lived a champagne lifestyle.   For Mr Don Rowe (ex President) it included his claiming of approximately $40,000 in reimbursement for telephone bills; his making of $214,050 in cash withdrawals on his RSL credit card without supporting documentation; the charging of $92,679 in services to his RSL credit card  for which there was no supporting documentation and allowing his son to live for seven years rent free in the Presidential suite at the Hyde Park Inn (owned by the NSW RSL).   Read too how members of the Executive (including the President) voted themselves huge consultancy fees in their capacity as Directors of RSL LifeCare (formed in 1911 to provide care and services to war veterans).

These matters are now the subject of a formal NSW police investigation.

Don Rowe and his merry band deserve to be stripped of their assets and their medals and then incarcerated for life  (but only after a fair trial).     They dishonor the veteran community.    

As an Honorary Member of the NSW RSL I am highly pissed orf.


Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Time to bring back the firing squad.

Gerald said...

Aw nothing new where some Veterans put their own circumstances above the majority.

Anonymous said...

Veteran....Never underestimate human nature when it is not linked to oversight. They are guilty as hell but so is the system that allowed them to to this. It was drummed into me early in my business career that if an employee steals from you once, it his fault, if he steals from you twice it's your fault. Anything to do with alcohol, tills and purchasing needs to be closely monitored and for this to go on so long means the system is broken.

There is barely a day goes by where "trusted employee" is outed for nicking a few hundred grand off employer who become lazy.

Adolf...stupid comment as usual. Thanks for deleting my rebuttal on previous thread, it merely proves that you talk nonsense.

Lord Egbut

Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Ledgut, if you had any brains you might remember you are permanently banned from my blog for obnoxious behaviour. Don't bother commenting there.

BTW You seem to recognise irony only when it is written by someone else.

The Veteran said...

Egbut ... yes I agree but re oversight ... the Executive comprised 'name' persons; some with legal and accounting backgrounds. You should also read what Justice Bergin said about the role of the auditors in this sad sorry mess ... she was scathing.

Read too the comments about the RSL National President. At the very least his advice to the NSW RSL might be construed as condoning their cover-up (for the 'good' of the RSL organisation as a whole).

This wasn't your local bowling club or even a large RSL (RSA). This mobs turnover was in the tens of millions.

I see the NSW RSL under their new President has fore-sworn engaging in any fundraising activities this year (including ANZAC Day) in support of their organisation. Good call, their brand is tarnished and they need to be seen as having acted to put it right. It is reported that any fundraising is to be directed at supporting the Invictus Games organisation.

I repeat. As an Honorary Member of the NSW RSL I feel betrayed.

Anonymous said...

It is a case of Zuma the crook out and Ramaphosa the terminator in. I too would feel gutted and want to smack a few will be very interesting to see what sort of sentence these white collar "professionals" attract. After release they should be made to work the late shift on the bar for five years on $1 an hour. Put back what you took.

Lord Egbut

Gerald said...

Adolf will ypu stop thread jacking. You lack of contribution is annoying.

Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Gerald, if you want to lay down the law, you'd better get your own blog.

You might also give attention, if you have any, to Ledgut's earlier comment.