AN investigation into City of Perth chief executive Martin Mileham has “literally come out of left field” according Lord Mayor Lisa Scaffidi.
It is another blow to the City after Ms Scaffidi last week faced a two-day State Administrative Tribunal penalty hearing for 19 breaches of the Local Government Act.
It was reported earlier today Mr Mileham took personal leave, but Ms Scaffidi revealed this afternoon it was in light of discovering he had been under investigation by law firm Herbert Smith Freehills for three months.
Ms Scaffidi said Mr Mileham had no knowledge of the investigation until last week.
“(It was) a non-council endorsed investigation conducted by an external legal firm in 2017, which was from the period November 2017 to January 2018 without the knowledge of the officer or council,” she said.
“Mr Mileham has understandably taken this matter personally as anyone would and it’s caused him to go on sick leave.
“I have great concerns for his wellbeing at this time and that to me is the most paramount issue right now that we don’t cause him any further grief or distress.”
Ms Scaffidi said the City was baffled as to how this could have happened without notice and its legal firm McLeods Barristers and Solicitors was now investigating.
Acting chief executive Robert Mianich said Mr Mileham was made aware of the investigation about Tuesday or Wednesday last week.
Ms Scaffidi said despite the “distractions”, it was business as usual and morale among City staff was “not that bad”.