Letters: Border Mail readers have their say on the issues of the day

Why no one charged?

Detective Superintendent  Michael Rowan in a media release on the murder of Donald Mackay wrote: “Although three men were convicted of conspiring to murder Mr Mackay, and a Royal Commission named six other men who may have ordered the killing, no-one has ever been charged with his murder”.

So how can this be? Three people were convicted of conspiracy to murder Donald Mackay in Victoria yet not one of them was ever charged with murder of Donald Mackay in NSW. Surely this indicates that despite police claims about an “ongoing inquiry” there has never been any desire by the NSW police to solve the murder. 

40 YEARS ON: A reader says it is the duty of NSW police to explain why no one has ever been charged over the murder of Donald Mackay in Griffith in 1977.

40 YEARS ON: A reader says it is the duty of NSW police to explain why no one has ever been charged over the murder of Donald Mackay in Griffith in 1977.

Superintendent Rowan states he is unavailable for interviews. Surely it is the duty of the media to ask him to explain why after 40 years the NSW police have never charged anyone with the murder?

Dr John Jiggens, Griffith

Principles to embrace

The front page report in The Border Mail (July 13) that Tim McCurdy, the Nationals member of Parliament for Ovens Valley, is being investigated by police for alleged fraud of about $375,000 is very serious and deeply concerning. Personal honesty and integrity are fundamental qualities required for our elected representatives.

The Age reported the same week that fewer than a quarter of federal politicians (and not a single Coalition MP) have agreed to new ethical standards devised by corruption fighter Tony Fitzgerald QC. Fitzgerald’s seven principles include: “To act honourably and fairly and solely in the public interest; To tell the truth; Not to mislead or deceive and; Not to withhold or obfuscate information to which voters are entitled”. All very worthy and fundamental principles for any elected representative .

I believe we need a similar set of principles for Victoria’s parliamentarians. And the community could invite candidates who stand for future election to sign up to these principles before we cast our votes.

The reported police investigation raises important questions of the values that inform Mr McCurdy’s conduct. He needs to provide a full explanation of his behaviour, regardless of the outcome of the investigation. Mr McCurdy claims that the matter was “resolved three years ago” and that “after mediation in 2014, a confidential legal agreement was reached”. But what does this actually mean?

Phil Haines, Wangaratta

Our sincere thanks

I would sincerely like to thank all the local residents who took part in Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check this May and June, making it a huge success. During the campaign a record 63,211 checks were delivered by Stroke Foundation in partnership with Priceline Pharmacy across the country. With your support, we far exceeded last year’s tally of 56,000 health checks.

Disturbingly, one in three participants was found to have high blood pressure, which is a key risk factor for stroke. The results came as a wake-up call to many, as high blood pressure often has no symptoms. 

Stroke kills more women than breast cancer, more men than prostate cancer and leaves thousands with an ongoing disability. It happens in an instant, changing the lives of the survivor and their loved ones forever.

There is one stroke in Australia every nine minutes. However it doesn’t have to be this way, stroke is largely preventable. There are many things we can all do to help protect ourselves from stroke, like managing our blood pressure, getting more active, maintaining a healthy diet, stopping smoking and reducing our alcohol consumption.

If we can reduce high blood pressure we will have a lasting impact on the rate of stroke in this country. Together we can also take the battle to a higher level by demanding our state and federal politicians commit to a funded national action plan to address the prevention and treatment of stroke. 

Sharon McGowan, CEO Stroke Foundation