Former Labor MP Mike Kaiser has been appointed as acting Director-General of the Queensland Government’s Department of Resources.
It was one of two temporary three-month appointments announced when Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the Directors-General for each department under her newly formed government yesterday.
Queensland Resources Council chief executive Ian Macfarlane said the QRC and its members looked forward to continuing their close partnership with the department following his appointment.
“The QRC secured a commitment to work with the re-elected Palaszczuk Government to prepare and implement a Queensland Resources Industry Development Plan to ensure the contribution of mining and gas industries to Queensland’s COVID-19 recovery and its economic growth beyond the pandemic is maximised,” he said.
“The QRC looks forward to working with the new Director-General and his department to ensure this plan becomes a blueprint for the sector’s growth and Queensland’s recovery.”
Mr Macfarlane also paid tribute to the department’s outgoing Director-General, James Purtill.
“The QRC has worked closely with James and his team on a range of issues impacting the resources sector,” he said.
“At no time has the strength of this partnership been closer and stronger than in the response to COVID-19, when the resources sector and the department worked tirelessly together to keep the men and women in our industry safe, and their families and communities safe.
“We did that while ensuring operations could continue to keep Queenslanders working and earning for Queensland.”
Manager of Opposition business Jarrod Bleijie slammed the Kaiser appointment, with a comment on Twitter that; “it didn’t take long for @AnnastaciaMP to start handing out the jobs for Labor mates. Unbelievable that Mike Kaiser who was forced to resign from Parliament because of a branch stacking inquiry where he admitted his involvement in a vote-rigging rort is now a DG.”
Mr Kaiser has been with KPMG Australia since June 2015 and became a partner there in January 2018.
Ms Palazczuk said she had a high expectation of Directors-General to be focused on supporting her ministers to serve the people of Queensland.
“We’ve got a big job ahead of us and I expect everyone to roll up their sleeves and get on with our COVID recovery,” she said.
She indicated the positions with acting Directors-General would be advertised and permanent appointments announced following a meritorious selection process.