PM&C hires ex ONI boss Nick Warner as consultant

By Shannon Jenkins

Monday February 15, 2021

(AAP Image/Mick Tsikas)

Former Office of National Intelligence director-general Nick Warner has been appointed as counsellor to political and strategic advisory firm Dragoman, while also being engaged by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.

At Dragoman Warner joins the likes of fellow ex senior public servants Glenys Beauchamp, Bill Farmer, and John McCarthy.

The lobbying firm announced the appointment on LinkedIn last week, stating that Warner’s expertise on global intelligence, security matters and the region would be “invaluable” to its clients.

The ABC has revealed that Warner, who retired as ONI head in December, has from January also been working for the government as a consultant.

AusTender on Friday published a contract notice stating that PM&C had awarded Nick Warner and Associates Pty Ltd a $220,000 one-year contract for strategic advice and review services, which commenced on January 25.

Read more: Spy agency reshuffle: Nick Warner the supremo, new heads for ASIS and ASD

The ABC has previously revealed that Dragoman managing director and former Liberal Party vice-president Tom Harley had asked then-ONI boss Warner for intelligence information.

Labor MP Julian Hill has called on the prime minister to explain if and how conflicts of interests are being managed by the government in regard to the appointment.

Over the weekend deputy prime minister Michael McCormack told reporters that Warner was a “great Australian” and the government “always make sure that those conflicts of interest have been declared”.

Last week Dragoman was reportedly hired by French shipbuilder Naval Group to create a strategy to better work with Australian suppliers, according to The Australian.

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