Monday, 22 February 2021
Questions without Notice
I thank Senator Hanson for the question, although I don't accept all of the characterisations made in Senator Hanson's question, particularly those in relation to Mr Di Bartolomeo. Obviously his statements to parliamentary committees are on the record and they are there for scrutiny. In relation to Ms Holgate, let me say that I have a very high regard for Ms Holgate, with whom I worked particularly in my previous portfolio, of Trade. I recognise the work that she did whilst at Australia Post. Ms Holgate took the step to resign from her position following some of the evidence that came out in the last lot of Senate estimates hearings. There has been a subsequent review in that regard. That review did making findings in relation to the purchase of Cartier watches and the actions that've been undertaken by Australia Post. Of course, it was Ms Holgate's decision that she resign at the time—I do wish her well. In response to that review I, as finance minister, have taken steps across all government business enterprises to remind them of their responsibilities under the PGPA Act, particularly the responsibilities to ensure appropriate use of taxpayers' money, which, ultimately, was the matter of concern in relation to the purchase of those Cartier watches.