Before the Abbott Coalition Government appointed John Lloyd Australian Public Service Commissioner in 2014 he was Director, Workplace Relations and Productivity at the far-right pressure group, the Institute for Public Affairs - so this was all but inevitable....The Sydney Morning Herald, 18 May 2018:The Prime Minister's department has refused to release emails relating to the public service commissioner John Lloyd and a right-wing think tank, saying they could prejudice an investigation into a possible breach of the law.Mr Lloyd has previously rejected suggestions he gave special access and research to the Institute of Public Affairs after Labor senators last year raised an email he sent to a member of the group with an attachment showing what he described as "generous" provisions in public service enterprise agreements.A freedom of information request sought emails held by Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet secretary Martin Parkinson mentioning Mr Lloyd and the IPA, and dated from October 23, after senators referred to the email in a Senate estimates hearing.The department responded to the request last month by refusing to release two emails in Dr Parkinson's inbox, dated December 20 and December 22."I am satisfied that disclosure secretary Peter Rush wrote.Releasing the documents could also "reasonably be expected to prejudice the impartial adjudication of a particular case", Mr Rush said.One document is 30 pages long, and another is five pages.The department and the Australian Public Service Commission have refused to answer repeated questions from Fairfax Media asking who is under investigation, who is conducting the probe, and the matters being investigated."The department has no comment," Prime Minister and Cabinet said in two separate statements.The APS commission said it would not comment "on speculation about any investigation".The issue of an investigation is still dogging John Lloyd and was addressed at a Finance And Public Administration Legislation Committee Estimates hearing on 21 May 2018, where at 1:57pm Lloyd went from professing unfamiliarity with a government act relevant to his current situation to this…….Fairfax Media journalist tweeting about Senate Estimates hearing, 21 May 2018:
This is awkward. Public Service Commissioner John Lloyd is flat out refusing to say whether he is under investigation over his relationship with the IPA #estimates— Michael Koziol (@michaelkoziol) May 21, 2018
Yes, the Federal Coalition Government really opted for a member of the brains trust with the appointment of John Lloyd.