Information provided to the State Liberals raises further doubts over Public Sector Minister Susan Close’s version of events about the appointment of Erma Ranieri as Commissioner for Public Sector Employment.
“Information provided to the State Liberals by a whistleblower is that on 7 April 2014 Minister Close took a submission to cabinet indicating she would propose at a future cabinet submission that Ms Ranieri would be appointed,” said Shadow Public Sector Minister Rob Lucas.
However, Minister Close told Parliament on 6 May that “I am yet to turn my mind to such an eventuality.”
“After the State Liberals asked questions in Parliament about Ms Ranieri’s appointment, there was a hurriedly constructed internal selection process without public advertisement, which appointed Ms Ranieri.
“Information provided to the State Liberals also indicates that prior to 7 April, Minister Close had discussed Ms Ranieri’s appointment with Premier Weatherill.
“We also know that prior to the selection panel process, Ms Ranieri was telling staff in the DPC that she was going to be the new Commissioner for Public Sector Employment from 1 July 2014.
“Also, Ms Ranieri, prior to the selection panel process, commissioned a review to amalgamate her office with the Office of Public Employment and Review and the Public Sector Workforce Relations Agency, and commissioned consultants KPMG to do work on the amalgamation.
“Minister Close’s story doesn’t add up, and as a result her ministerial career is hanging in the balance.
“It is completely unacceptable that one of the most senior positions in the government has not been advertised publicly.
“Minister Close is now relying on the hope that no whistleblower in the public service, in the public interest, leaks her Cabinet submission, CabSub102, to an MP.
“If Minister Close’s submission to Cabinet on 7 April is leaked, then she will stand accused of having misled Parliament in her answer on 6 May. If that happens, her ministerial career will be over.”