Former defence chief walks out on CPA review

Sir Angus Houston has withdrawn from his appointment as chair of the independent review into CPA Australia after conflict of interest concerns were raised.

In a letter from Sir Angus to CPA Australia president Jim Dickson, seen by ifa, the former defence force chief announced he was withdrawing from the review with immediate effect after allegations of previous personal ties to ousted chief executive Alex Malley surfaced.

“My independence to conduct such a review has been called into question because of my endorsement of The Naked CEO and a television interview that I did with Alex Malley,” Sir Angus wrote.

“After almost 20 years and some of the most testing of circumstances in public life my independence and integrity have never ever been an issue. I stand on my record. However, I would not want any review I am involved with to be tarnished by the perceptions expressed.”

Sir Angus also said it had become clear that a “deep, comprehensive and time-consuming” review will be required, which he does not have time to commit to due to previous engagements.

The slated chair has not yet signed any documents binding him to the role and the terms of reference remain under development.

Former auditor-general Ian McPhee, who also wrote an endorsement of Alex Malley’s memoir, will now take on the role of review chair, CPA Australia has announced.

The changes come as ifa sister title Accountants Daily has reported that CPA Australia has disclosed the remuneration details for directors of its Malaysian and Chinese subsidiaries, which were withheld during the previous round of salary disclosures to the press.

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