Wealthy political leader Clive Palmer has been accused of dragging his heels to reimburse some of his election candidates for campaign spending and of running a disorganised one-man show.
Fairfax Media has heard complaints from several unsuccessful candidates that the fledgling Palmer United Party - which is set to hold a powerful position in the Senate from July next year - has been slow to settle payments.
''He's not dishonest; he's disorganised,'' said one affected candidate.
Mr Palmer, who is still awaiting an outcome in the lower-house Queensland seat of Fairfax he contested on September 7, said he could not see a problem.
''Who cares if they're upset? It's only a couple of weeks after the election,'' he said.
''We're like any organisation. We do our accounts and payments monthly.''
It is believed Mr Palmer angered some candidates with his October 9 comments that the party did not want the $2.2 million in public funding the Australian Electoral Commission allocated based on the election results.
''We wrote them [the AEC] and said we didn't want any money and they've sent us a cheque [anyway], so I don't know how you can stop these public servants,'' Mr Palmer told the ABC at the time.
He also recently boasted about providing his scrutineers with champagne and caviar.
Several political hopefuls backed up the PUP and argued the dissent was an isolated issue. Victorian senate candidate Barry Michael said he believed the payment process had been held up because party officials had been involved in scrutineering the recounts in Fairfax and the WA Senate.
''What Clive has achieved in a short period of time is phenomenal. If anyone whinges, it's just sour grapes,'' the former world champion boxer said.
Banks candidate Jake Wellham said his campaign cost $25,000 to $30,000 but he had kept receipts and had been fully reimbursed the $10,000 he was promised.
Mr Wellham said people who believed the party's handling of the election was disorganised should take stock of what was achieved in an eight-week window.
But Matthew Palise, the candidate for Cook, said he quit the party after the election because it did not have any democratic processes. Mr Palise said he did not know he was about to be named as the party's shadow minister for Aboriginal employment and economic development until the morning of the PUP election launch.
''Whatever Clive says goes; and I wasn't prepared to be part of a party that has a leader that doesn't listen to anyone else,'' he said.
Mr Palmer said Mr Palise was just upset the PUP did not support his ambition to run in the NSW byelection in Miranda last weekend.