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Premier's right-hand man Stewart resigns to take up top trade role in London


Queensland’s top public servant will leave his post to become the state’s next Agent-General in London, sparking a reshuffle in the upper ranks of the bureaucracy.

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Department of the Premier and Cabinet director-general Dave Stewart will leave in May after six years in the role. He will be replaced by current Under Treasurer Rachel Hunter.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said Stewart was one of the longest serving directors-general of her department and one of the most experienced bureaucrats in the country.

“Dave Stewart is one of the best – he is widely respected as one of the most experienced public officials in this country having worked for governments of all persuasions,” she said in a statement.

She said it was fitting that Hunter’s appointment was announced as Queensland Women’s Week wrapped up. She will be the first woman to hold the role.

“I look forward to working closely with Ms Hunter as we continue to build on our economic recovery on the other side of this pandemic,” Palaszczuk said.

Speculation has been rife since last year’s election of imminent change in the top echelons of the bureaucracy. However, last November the Premier’s office dismissed rumours of Stewart’s departure as “bunkum”.

The Government has yet to find a replacement for Hunter as Under Treasurer despite the importance of a such a position in the lead up to the state budget.

Former Labor strategist Mike Kaiser remains acting in the position of Resources department director-general.

Palaszczuk also paid tribute to outgoing Agent-General for the UK and Europe trade and investment commissioner Linda Apelt, another former senior public servant.










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