Carol Mills responds: ‘what went wrong at the Parliament House job?’

A former secretary, in tears, tells how “enemies” brought her down and will do the same to her successors until governance arrangements for the parliamentary departments are changed.

Former departmental secretary Carol Mills has mounted a strong defence of the contribution made by the Department of Parliamentary Services, warning that her successors will face the same attacks if governance structures are not changed.

Mills today voluntarily fronted the Senate’s finance and public administration committee as a private citizen after it released a damning report into her running of the Department of Parliamentary Services last month.

However, the hearing was prematurely ended as an increasingly distressed Mills broke down and was unable to continue answering questions into her termination last month and the inconsistent evidence in the May 2014 Estimates over CCTV use in a code-of-conduct matter.

The allegations, which Mills denies, are that she misled the earlier Estimates hearing about not being aware that a DPS staff member was being investigated for approaching Senator John Faulkner’s office after being caught on CCTV footage. Faulkner obtained a copy of the report into the incident and questioned Mills about it. At first Mills denied knowledge, but later corrected the record that it was in fact a matter she was familiar with, but only that day. An email surfaced proving she was aware of the staff member being under investigation much earlier.

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