Australia Post’s CEO Ahmed Fahour handed in his resignation today after seven years in the top job, as the organisation announced a major rebound in profits.
But behind the scenes there were stories of clashes between the Turnbull government and the nation’s top postie, along with the company’s board, over Fahour’s $5.6 remuneration package.
Prime minister Turnbull called it “too high” and it’s believed the government was pressuring Fahour and the board to take a pay cut.
The size of Fahour’s remuneration emerged earlier this month via a Coalition senator, against the wishes of the company, which argued it was concerned the details would damage the brand.
Fahour’s $4.4 million salary and $1.2 million bonus last financial year came at a time the $6 billion service made just $36 million. It made him Australia’s highest paid public servant and the world’s best paid postie.
The second highest pay packet for a government business goes to NBN boss Bill Morrow with $3.6 million.
Fahour’s departure was the trigger today for communications minister Mitch Fifield and finance minister Mathias Cormann to announce plans today to strip the Australia Post board of the powers to set pay for the managing director, handing responsibility to the Remuneration Tribunal
“The Australia Post Board will need to demonstrate to the Tribunal that their proposed remuneration package is commensurate with the responsibilities of the role,” the ministers said in a joint statement.
Since taking on the role in 2010, the Melbourne-based former NAB CEO has banked $23 million as he transformed the postal service into a thriving parcels business as letters side collapsed in the era of electronic mail.
His seven year tenure at Australia post will see Fahour eligible for a $4.3 million retirement payout in a decade when he turns 60.
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