WA government to 'claw back' money from health department trio
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WA government to 'claw back' money from health department trio

Attorney General John Quigley has instructed the government's lawyers to "claw back" hundreds of thousands of dollars in redundancy payments to three former public servants along with health department funds misused to pay for home renovations.

A CCC report tabled in parliament last week alleged years of fraudulent activity, bribery, inflated invoicing, 'bid rigging' and systematic manipulation of procurement procedures by the men and recommended they face criminal prosecution.

Those at the centre of the allegations all took redundancies totalling more than $600,000.

Mr Quigley said the State Solicitor would issue notices of demand to the men, but recovering the money could be a difficult process.

Attorney General John Quigley is attempting to claw back redundancy payments to three former public servants who are the subject of a damning CCC report.

Attorney General John Quigley is attempting to claw back redundancy payments to three former public servants who are the subject of a damning CCC report.Credit:Facebook

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"It is outrageous that the taxpayer has been the subject of such criminality by trusted public servants," he said.

"I'm just appalled and offended that these people got those redundancy payments.

"The clawing back of this money is complicated in view of the government's, the previous government's, earlier decision to offer redundancy.

"I'm not going to mislead the public and say this is an easy claw back."

Opposition spokesman on government accountability, Tjorn Sibma, called for an independent review of government procurement processes after the CCC on Monday released allegations a Horizon Power manager had invoiced a company he owned and employed his wife as a consultant.

"We need an independent reviewer to understand why we have a system which permits corruption like this to occur over the course of many years," Mr Sibma said.

"The whole basis of government procurement operates on the basis of trust, but you also need to have integrity systems internally in the agencies that reinforce that trust.

"I think at the minimum we need to undertake a wide ranging review into public sector procurement practices and I would be surprised if the government cannot call for that by at least the end of the week."

Treasurer Ben Wyatt, who is responsible for the government's procurement processes through the Department of Finance, said new contracts to the companies named in the CCC's Department of Health report had been suspended and an audit was now under way to examine "whether the issues uncovered by the CCC are widespread throughout the public service".

"I think we have to have an understanding of the checks and balances, what agencies have been doing to monitor and implement those checks and balances, and whether any reform is required," he said.

Mr Wyatt said Cabinet would be discussing how the audit would be coordinated.

Nathan covers state politics for WAtoday. He is a former editor of the Mandurah Mail, where he also covered politics for Fairfax's regional titles.