Australia Minister defends $2.2m contract to donors
Israel’s Netanyahu faces calls to quit but is defiant in crisis
The prime minister said he would not step down after he was indicted on charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust.Netanyahu said he would not step down after he was indicted on charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust by Israel’s attorney general Thursday night.
The federal indigenous affairs minister is waving off concerns over a contract he awarded without tender to a company linked to Liberal party donors.
Ken Wyatt's spokesman told AAP the company was chosen at the recommendation of the Finance Department to provide eye surgeries in Aboriginal communities.
The $2.2 million contract to Vanguard Health was given to deliver services at twice the market rate, Nine newspapers reported on Tuesday.
Large explosion rocks Texas chemical plant
An explosion at a chemical plant in Texas early Wednesday sent a large fireball into the sky, reports and witnesses said, triggering a mandatory evacuation. Dramatic videos and photos shared on social media showed a large blast, with one resident describing waking up to a huge boom and "glass all over us".Ryan Mathewson, who lives roughly two minutes from the plant in Port Neches, near Houston, told AFP: "We woke up to glass all over us and parts of the ceiling caved in, (and) doors blown in." © Reuters An explosion and fire are pictured at a chemical plant in Port Neches, Texas, U.S.
But Mr Wyatt's spokesman says the Vanguard Health contract had originally been signed under the then-Labor government in 2010-11.
Mr Wyatt's spokesman said the proposal was assessed within standard guidelines and was figured to be suitable for providing the surgeries.
Vanguard Consulting, which runs Vanguard Health, has donated $21,000 to Queensland's Liberal National Party.
It comes as an ex-staffer in Mr Wyatt's office blew the lid on the MP's failure to address bullying and poor procedural issues in his office.
Kate Johnston told Nine newspapers on Monday that Mr Wyatt sacked her in 2018 when she raised the alarm.
She also claims Mr Wyatt had "defection talks" with Labor and threatened to trigger a by-election when approached by former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull's office.
A spokesman for Mr Wyatt told AAP on Monday he would not comment on "internal office or staff matters".
Stuck in Staffordshire: Boris Johnson is trapped on-board his party bus after Extinction Rebellion protesters GLUE themselves to the front of it disrupting his campaign trail with just 36 hours to go before polls open .
Extinction Rebellion protesters, some dressed as bees, walked towards the bus in the road as it left a visit to JCB in Staffordshire. Three of the protesters stuck their hands to the bus with glue.Climate change activists have glued themselves to the Conservative campaign bus, warning the party's green targets amount to a 'death sentence' for everyone.