Kathryn Campbell, the beleaguered former Secretary of the Departments of Human Services and Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) under the previous LNP Government, has resigned from her AUKUS special advisor job.
Shortly after the Labor Government took power in July 2022, Ms Campbell – who is also a Major General in the Australian Army Reserve – was given the $900,000 per annum AUKUS role and retained her full DFAT remuneration and conditions, a move that has been roundly criticised.
She was subsequently the subject of intense scrutiny and criticism by the Royal Commission into Robodebt for the role she played as Secretary of the Department of Human Services during the peak of the Robodebt scandal.
Following the handing down of the Royal Commission’s report in early July, Ms Campbell took a leave of absence, and it was subsequently reported she had been involuntarily stood down from the AUKUS job on 17 July.
The highly critical report said that during Ms Campbell’s time as head of the Department of Human Services, she was “responsible for a department that had established, implemented and maintained an unlawful program”.
In her findings, Commissioner Catherine Holmes added that Ms Campbell did “nothing of substance” when she became aware of the substantial issues regarding the income averaging process and its probable illegality.
In a brief statement on Monday (24 July), Defence simply said: “Defence can confirm it has accepted Ms Kathryn Campbell’s resignation from the Department with effect from Friday 21 July 2023. Defence will not provide further comment on this matter.”