Gladys Berejiklian is still earning $14,000-a-month despite standing down as NSW Premier because she is yet to formally resign from parliament.
The former state leader announced her plans to leave state Parliament as soon as a by-election could be held when she announced her shock resignation on October 1.
But until someone takes over her seat in Willoughby, Ms Berejiklian will continue to receive a sizeable taxpayer salary.
Former Deputy Premier John Barilaro and outgoing transport minister Andrew Constance, who both stood down just days after Ms Berejiklian, are also yet to lodge their resignations and will keep taking home the five-figure monthly payment.
Gladys Berejiklian (pictured) resigned on October 1 just before the NSW capital was set to emerge from a gruelling four month lockdown
Opposition Leader Chris Minns on Thursday called for the coalition MPs to hand in their papers and stop wasting taxpayer money.
‘There’s now three Lib-Nat MPs who are planning to leave on their own accord,’ he said, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.
‘The bottom line is, if you’re going to go, go.’
The three by-elections sparked by their departures are set to cost taxpayers almost $1million each, with new representatives to be elected in Bega and Monaro for Mr Constance and Mr Barilaro, respectively.
Mr Constance announced his resignation on October 3, confirming he wants to win the seat of Gilmore back from Labor, while Mr Barilaro announced he was quitting politics the next day.
Mr Constance said he would not resign until his South Coast electorate was out of lockdown and intends to complete the parliamentary term.
Mr Barilaro has asked for the earliest possible date to leave parliament, a spokesperson said.
Meanwhile, Liberal MP for Holsworthy Melanie Gibbons on Wednesday announced her intention to seek preselection for the federal seat of Hughes – meaning a fourth by-election is on the cards.
Ms Berejiklian and former Deputy Premier John Barilaro (pictured) will pocket $14,000-a-month until they formally hand in their resignation to parliament
NSW Minister for Transport Andrew Constance (pictured) will also continue to take home the five-figure monthly salary as he contests the federal seat of Gilmore
Until she resigns, she will earn $16,000 a month in her parliamentary secretary role.
Mr Minns slammed Ms Gibbons for pursuing her federal ambitions while an estimated 6000 people in her seat had lost jobs during the latest lockdown.
‘The responsibility and priority of the Member for Holsworthy should be for their jobs, not her own,’ he told the Herald.
‘And the most obvious way that the Member for Holsworthy can demonstrate that is to abandon these fanciful plans of running for a federal seat and instead do her job representing the community that she was elected to just three years ago.’
Some 244,000 jobs in NSW have been lost since May, with another 217,000 people reporting not working at all last month due to ‘economic or other reasons’.
Mr Minns said the staggering unemployment figures highlight why the government MPs, except Ms Berejiklian who stood down amid an ICAC investigation, should have stayed in office.
The news comes as it was revealed Ms Berejiklian’s elderly Armenian migrant parents Arsha and Krikor held an emotional reunion with their heartbroken daughter on Monday – just hours after lockdown orders lifted.
Ms Berejiklian pictured announcing her shock resignation on October 1 after ICAC revealed she was under investigation
Gladys Berejiklian’s mother (pictured together) revealed the former premier rushed straight to their family home when lockdown lifted on Monday
Her mother Arsha revealed that after 106 days apart due to her government’s Covid restrictions, the ousted NSW Premier arrived on the doorstep of the red-brick North Ryde home in Sydney’s north-west where she was raised ‘as soon as she was allowed’.
Arsha Berejiklian told Daily Mail Australia on Wednesday that while her daughter had initially been ‘heartbroken’ at having to step down while NSW was emerging from the Covid pandemic, she’d come to accept her decision.
‘It was nice to see her,’ a proud Arsha said.
‘She’s mature, she’s okay, and she knows what she’s doing.
‘She’s very happy and she feels very loved and supported.’
While Gladys has sought comfort from her family in the 10 days since her resignation shocked Australia, the 51-year-old is also steeling herself for the fight to clear her name.
Daily Mail Australia earlier this week revealed Ms Berejiklian has assembled a Who’s Who of top lawyers to defend herself against the Independent Commission Against Corruption investigation which ended forced her to end her premiership – headed by Bret Walker, SC, who will be assisted by Sophie Callan, SC.
Ms Berejiklian had not seen her parents for 106 days in the flesh, and had spoken on occasion about how tough it was for her
Ms Berejiklian will next week be represented by a dream team of legal heavy-hitters led by Bret Walker SC (pictured) – who famously represented Cardinal George Pell against child abuse charges and who costs an estimated $25,000 a day for his services
Mr Walker, who charges an estimated $25,000 a day for his services, is considered to be one of the top barristers in Australia and is the ‘go-to’ silk for high-profile clients with deep pockets. He most recently represented Cardinal George Pell against child abuse charges.
Meanwhile, Ms Callan is best known for prosecuting former Labor ministers Eddie Obeid and Ian Macdonald over matters arising from ICAC investigations.
But before she faces ICAC’s public hearings next week – with high profile witnesses including Mike Baird – Ms Berejiklian needed to see her parents for the first time since resigning, which happened just days before NSW started to emerge from lockdown.
Ms Berejiklian has previously revealed how tough the city-wide shutdown was for her personally, especially living along and apart from her tightknit family.
‘FaceTime only works for a certain amount of months,’ she said in September.
‘I’m really looking forward to seeing my parents and hanging out with them. They’re both in their 80s.
‘It’s been really hard. Everybody is in a similar situation.’
So it’s no surprise that her first stop – before popping in to her local nail salon or booking a hair appointment – was to see her parents.
‘She is smiling and happy,’ Arsha, who lost her parents in the Armenian genocide of 1915 and spoke only her native language to Gladys until she was five, said.
Her elderly Armenian parents, Arsha and Krikor, still live in the North Ryde red-brick home and had waited 106 days for the reunion – a byproduct of the lockdown that Ms Berejiklian has so stoically led her state out of
Ms Berejiklian’s barrister Bret Walker will be in her corner, assisted by Sophie Callan SC (pictured)
‘She is very happy and we are proud of her of course. We all love her very much.’
When asked if Gladys would consider a return to politics, Arsha laughed and shook her head: ‘No more! It’s time to relax.
‘She knows what she’s doing… but we don’t like to ask what comes next.’
Ms Berejiklian had initially sought Mr Walker’s advice after being told by the ICAC she would be named as a person of interest in its Operation Keppel inquiry into her ex-boyfriend, ‘dodgy’ ex-Wagga Wagga MP Daryl Maguire.
Mr Walker advised the then-premier she could legally stay in her job while the investigation continued, before she chose to resign on October 1.
Ms Berejiklian’s sister famously revealed she was in a relationship with esteemed barrister Arthur Moses on Instagram earlier this year
Pictured: A closer look at some of the flowers and cards left for the former premier at her office. Neighbours said she was ‘the hardest worker and kindest person’ they knew
A lot depends on the outcome of the inquiry – with several political allies hoping she will make a run for Federal politics.
Mr Constance threw his support behind the potential career move after the idea was floated online.
‘If Glad can get cleared up, whatever these issues are, you know, through the public hearing process, I think she’d be unreal,’ he said last week.
‘You couldn’t have a more hard-working, deeply principled, you know, Australian female politician than Gladys Berejiklian.’
Prime Minister Scott Morrison also indicated he’d support a shift into federal politics.
ICAC will probe how millions of dollars worth of taxpayer funds ended up in her disgraced secret lover’s electorate.
Despite the controversy, those who worked with her say she is a ‘genuinely decent person’ who led the state through some of its ‘darkest days’.
Gladys Berejiklian left this heartfelt note to her constituents in her office window after emerging for the first time since her shock resignation over a corruption investigation
The ex-Premier appeared at her Willoughby office days after her resignation which was awash in a sea of flowers and cards voicing support for her
News emerged of Ms Bereijiklian’s secret relationship with former Wagga Wagga MP Daryl Maguire in March.
The premier was called to answer questions by ICAC who were investigating the disgraced politicians’ dodgy dealings
Mr Maguire had previously been accused of abusing his public office before admitting to being involved in a cash-for-visa scheme and seeking secret commissions for brokering property deals.
In August it emerged that Ms Berejiklian showed ‘interest’ in a proposed $5.5million grant for a shooting association clubhouse and conference facility in his electorate, despite the proposal being repeatedly knocked back, documents show.
The Australian Clay Target Association funds as well as another grant involving the Riverina Conservatorium of Music, also in Wagga Wagga, will be probed by ICAC when the hearing gets underway later this month.
Ms Berejiklian has denied any wrongdoing and maintains no special treatment was given to the proposals.
She was represented when she appeared before the ICAC last year by Arthur Moses SC; they are now in a relationship and he would therefore no longer act for her.
They’ve managed to keep the budding romance relatively private after her younger sister Mary let the cat out of the bag back in June.
‘She would thrive in any role, she just works that hard,’ a neighbour said. ‘But her life will never be the same again.’
Gladys Berejiklian is pictured with her youngest sister Mary. The AFR recently published an opinion piece saying The Project host Lisa Wilkinson needed to ‘apologise’ to Gladys for her critique of her handling of the Covid-19 pandemic
A man attempts to deliver flowers to NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian at Parliament House in Sydney. There has been an outpouring of grief since the popular premier stepped down
Why did Gladys Berejiklian resign?
Ms Berejiklian quit on October 1 after the state’s corruption watchdog said it was investigating her.
The Independent Commission Against Corruption is investigating whether Ms Berejiklian encouraged or allowed corrupt conduct by her secret ex-boyfriend and former Wagga Wagga MP Daryl Maguire between 2012 and 2018.
It will also probe whether she breached public trust by not reporting any suspicion of corrupt conduct and what role she had to play in two government grants handed out in Mr Maguire’s electorate.
The NSW corruption watchdog ICAC is investigating whether Ms Berejiklian encouraged or allowed corrupt conduct by her ex-boyfriend and former MP Daryl Maguire (pictured together)
An ICAC public inquiry on the matter will be held for about 10 days from October 18, overseen by Assistant Commissioner Ruth McColl SC.
Mr Maguire is accused of abusing his public office after admitting being involved in a cash-for-visa scheme and seeking secret commissions for brokering property deals. He was forced to resign in 2018.
In an emotional 10-minute speech on October 1 Ms Berejiklian denied any wrongdoing and slammed the watchdog for announcing its investigation into her as the state emerges from a four-month Covid lockdown.
‘Resigning at this time is against every instinct in my being and something which I do not want to do,’ she said.