West Australian MP Barry Urban has faced Parliament to “apologise unreservedly” over discrepancies about his past.
The member for Darling Range addressed Parliament for the first time following two weeks of speculation, however both the state government and opposition have criticised the now independent MP over his statement claiming his “explanation was not comprehensive enough.”
In a statement to Parliament on Thursday he addressed claims he lied about obtaining two degrees at two different British universities and had falsified claims he served in Bosnia during a peace-keeping mission.
It came after revelations he had worn a fake war medal to an ANZAC Day service in April that he bought online.
He said he was “embarrassed by my error” and for the hurt I may have caused by my actions.”
“When I was first asked about the medal by the media and the Premier I was under the genuine but mistaken belief that it was the correct medal,” Mr Urban said.
“In relation to other allegations made with respect to my service history, I am currently seeking further information from the relevant authorities to substantiate that service history.”
He admitted to falsely claiming he had completed a Diploma in Local Government at university.
“I completed nine out the 10 modules and the final module was not assessed, it was not completed,” Mr Urban said.
Mr Urban also revealed he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder and was continuing to seek treatment.
“Like many service personnel, I have seen and experienced things that are very hard to fathom,” he said.
“In times of high stress my PTSD symptoms can make it hard for me to function.”
“I’m doing my best to cope in these difficult circumstances.”
“I apologise unreservedly to this Parliament, I apologise to the Premier and thank him for his understanding.”
Mr Urban left parliament immediately after his speech.
Premier Mark McGowan said Mr Urban’s explanation was not good enough and moved to have his conduct investigated.
“(Due to) the fact that his explanation was not comprehensive enough, I am referring him now to the procedure and privileges committee,” he said.
“They can look at whether statements he has made to the Parliament have been sufficiently honest and comprehensive.”
Opposition Leader Mike Nahan called Mr Urban’s statement “entirely inadequate”, claiming Mr Urban did not respond to a number of key issues.
“These have been clear claims about his adequacy to be preselected and then elected to this House,” Dr Nahan said.