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Former senior bureaucrat Mike Summerell criticises Palaszczuk government over integrity issues, backs inquiry call

Annastacia Palaszczuk defended her government's record on accountability and transparency. (ABC News: Michael Lloyd)

A former top Queensland bureaucrat has taken a swipe at the integrity of the Palaszczuk government, alleging public servants have been pressured into saving the government from political embarrassment.

Former state archivist Mike Summerell released a statement saying public servants had been influenced to act in the best interests of the government, instead of being politically impartial.

Mr Summerell also backed mounting calls for an independent inquiry into integrity issues within the state government.

"For many senior public servants in Queensland the concept of an impartial, apolitical and professional public service is career suicide," he said.

Former state archivist Mike Summerell said his ability to undertake his statutory role was significantly compromised. (Supplied)

"If the public good is in conflict with the political good of the government of the day, acting against the political interest of the government for many would be a step they could not afford to take given their own responsibilities or ambitions as individuals."

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk today said she was proud of her government's track record on integrity issues and resisted calls for an inquiry.

Ability to uphold integrity 'significantly compromised and unsupported'

Mr Summerell's former position oversaw record-keeping for Queensland government agencies and public authorities, including MPs, but his contract was not renewed last year.

He claimed he was driven to make a complaint to the Crime and Corruption Commission (CCC), after experiencing "potentially inappropriate interference" since 2017.

He alleged he was deprived of key support and advice, including independent legal guidance relating to investigations and potential prosecutions.

"All attempts I took to rectify this were fruitless.

"In my experience, politicians have absolutely no interest in promoting transparency and accountability in government."

'We are always looking to do better'

Earlier this week, the state opposition called for an independent inquiry into growing concerns surrounding integrity issues within the government.

The push for an independent inquiry was backed by Katter's Australian Party (KAP) and the Queensland Council for Civil Liberties.

The Premier said she was concerned about the allegations and was unaware Mr Summerell had referred his complaints to the corruption watchdog.

"It concerns me that he outlined these concerns, and apparently they went to the CCC," she said.

"If anyone suspects any form of corruption, they should make a complaint.

"The CCC is the standing royal commission in Queensland."

'Biggest blow to our state's integrity'

Integrity issues have been plaguing the government for months, with the recent resignations of other key bureaucrats, including the Integrity Commissioner and the chair of the Crime and Corruption Commission, Alan MacSporran.

Opposition Leader David Crisafulli said he had written to the Premier asking for a commission of inquiry to examine how the government conducted business.

"If she's got nothing to fear, she'll launch an inquiry on behalf of every single honest Queenslander," Mr Crisafulli said.

"Because what's happened in the last week has trashed the reputation not just of this government but of this state.

"The Premier has no other option after the biggest blow to our state's integrity in over three decades."

KAP's Robbie Katter said he supported the call for a commission of inquiry.

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