John Bercow’s choice for Commons clerk is facing disgrace Down Under after a committee found she provided them with “contradictory” and “misleading” information. A scathing report from the Aussie parliament’s Privileges Committee today condemns Carol Mills for “a serious breach of accountability and probity”, finding her testimony over when exactly she knew CCTV cameras had been used to investigate leaks to be untrue.
“The submission … documents cast considerable doubt upon the evidence given by the secretary… The committee has not been able to reconcile the evidence given at the estimates hearing with the submission and documents which Department of Parliamentary Services (DPS) has subsequently provided. There should be no doubt … that the committee considers [this] … to be a serious breach of accountability and probity.”
Mills has gone to ground and is refusing to give comment to the Australian media. ABC reports her future is now “uncertain” and “under a cloud”. Today’s findings will mean her future does not lie in Westminster…
UPDATE: Senator John Faulkner, in speech given in the Senate yesterday described the department run by Carol Mills in these terms:
A parliamentary department should be an exemplar. But DPS is not.
The findings of this damning report, that the Secretary:
- has misled Senate Committees, and
- has given contradictory evidence, and
- has overseen the unauthorised use of CCTV,
reinforces my view – publicly stated – that DPS is the worst run government department in the Commonwealth of Australia.
A not so glowing reference for Bercow’s choice of Clerk…