Resignation from the Ministry
I have today written to the Prime Minister to tender my resignation as Minister for Ageing. I have done this because the recent publicity surrounding my former shareholdings in CBio has brought to my attention further oversights in relation to the proper declaration of my personal investments.
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16 March 2007
I have today written to the Prime Minister to tender my resignation as Minister for Ageing.
I have done this because the recent publicity surrounding my former shareholdings in CBio has brought to my attention further oversights in relation to the proper declaration of my personal investments.
None of these investments involves either impropriety or a conflict of interest, and there was never any dishonest intention on my part. Nonetheless, I have neglected to properly report a number of investments to the Prime Minister and to the Senate. This is the reason for my announcement today.
I deeply regret this lack of attention to detail, and the disruption it has caused to the Government in recent days. It is my genuine hope that my actions today will put an end to that disruption. I have today made additions to my official declarations of interest to rectify any omissions.
I also regret that my term as Australia’s Minister for Ageing has ended in this fashion. I have enjoyed my Ministerial role since I was appointed in January 2006. I believe I have been a good Minister for Ageing, and that I have achieved a great deal for older Australians and for the aged care industry. I will always be proud of these achievements, particularly the elderly protection legislation which is due to pass through the Senate and the Parliament next week.
I am also proud of the $1.5 billion funding and reform package announced by the Prime Minister last month. This was the Government’s final response to the recommendations of the Hogan report, and it was an honour for me to steer it through Cabinet over the last six months.
I leave the portfolio of Ageing in good shape, although in such a portfolio – as is the case in many others – the work is never finished. Sensible reform will continue. In this regard I wish the new Minister well. He or she will have my full cooperation and assistance if it is required and requested.
I wish to thank the leaders of the aged care industry who have dealt with me in good faith throughout my time as the Minister. I also acknowledge the assistance and support of officers of the Department of Health and Ageing and my personal staff. And finally, may I thank my family and friends for standing by me throughout what has been a difficult episode of my life.
It has been an honour and a privilege to have served as one of John Howard’s Ministers. The Howard Ministries, under the superb leadership of the Prime Minister, have enshrined for all Australians long-term prosperity and national security. I am proud to have been a small part of that process.
Media contact: Malcolm Cole - 0408 612 603
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