Meat hygiene chief resigns

Donald Macintyre looks back on Philip Corrigan's short career in the UK

Philip Corrigan, head of the Meat Hygiene Service, has resigned "for personal reasons" nine days after the Independent revealed that he was appointed to his job while he was under investigation by the Australian government.

The Meat Hygiene Service announced last night that Mr Corrigan will step down from his £50,000 a year post from 31 July.

A statement said Mr Corrigan had stated that he would continue longer in his post "if required" until a replacement had been found. It did not mention claims made in the Australian Senate that Mr Corrigan, a former senior official in the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS), had faced six disciplinary charges under Section 61 of the Public Services Act.

The alleged offences - which were not criminal and carry the maximum penalty of dismissal - were believed to concern funding for overseas travel.

Mr Corrigan's appointment was the subject of a parliamentary question by Paul Tyler, the Liberal Democrats' agriculture spokesman, who raised the issue of what references had been sought by the British government before he was appointed.

Angela Browning, a Parliamentary Under-Secretary at the Ministry of Agriculture, said that the normal inquiries had been made with AQIS.

Last night's statement said that Mr Corrigan had "used his international experience to shape the operational strategy of the Meat Hygiene Service to ensure it operates in the most professional and effective manner possible". The service is responsible for the enforcement of standards in abattoirs throughout the country.

It went on: "Philip Corrigan is a veterinary surgeon with a recognised international reputation in meat hygiene and in his time with the Meat Hygiene Service, he has developed excellent working relations with his peers, colleagues and staff. His work in assisting in the establishment of the Meat Hygiene Services has involved considerable personal sacrifice for Mr Corrigan - being apart from his family [still in Australia] and working long hours and seven days a week for many months."

Senator Bill O'Chee complained in the Australian senate on 21 March that the powerful senate estimates committee had not been told last November that Mr Corrigan had been given "official permission to have extended leave of absence so that he could take up a high-flying job in the United Kingdom".

The ministry said at the time that it was aware of allegations against Mr Corrigan, but that inquiries had not produced any evidence that he had acted "improperly or dishonestly".

Mr Corrigan, 48, was appointed to his job here last August. A document tabled in the Australian Senate in 1993 and purporting to be a letter from him to the Cold Storage Association of Australia sought a $500 grant towards a trip to an international conference on food-borne infections in Berlin.

Suggested Topics
News
More than 90 years of car history are coming to an end with the abolition of the paper car-tax disc
newsThis and other facts you never knew about the paper circle - completely obsolete today
News
people'I’d rather have Fred and Rose West quote my characters on childcare'
Life and Style
The new Windows 10 Start Menu
tech
Arts and Entertainment
There has been a boom in ticket sales for female comics, according to an industry survey
comedyFirst national survey reveals Britain’s comedic tastes
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Travel
Bruce Chatwin's novel 'On the Black Hill' was set at The Vision Farm
travelOne of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
Sport
footballManchester City 1 Roma 1: Result leaves Premier League champions in danger of not progressing
Arts and Entertainment
Gay and OK: a scene from 'Pride'
filmsUS film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
News
i100
Life and Style
Magic roundabouts: the gyratory system that has excited enthusiasts in Swindon
motoringJust who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Arts and Entertainment
Hilary North's 'How My Life Has Changed', 2001
booksWell it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Commercial Litigation NQ+

Very Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: NORTH HAMPSHIRE NQ to MID LEVEL - An e...

MANCHESTER - SENIOR COMMERCIAL LITIGATION -

Highly Attractive Pakage: Austen Lloyd: MANCHESTER - A highly attractive oppor...

Senior Marketing Manager - Central London - £50,000

£40000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (Campaigns, Offlin...

Head of Marketing - Acquisition & Direct Reponse Marketing

£90000 - £135000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Head of Marketing (B2C, Acquisition...

Day In a Page

Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Why do we like making lists?

Notes to self: Why do we like making lists?

Well it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Hong Kong protests: A good time to open a new restaurant?

A good time to open a new restaurant in Hong Kong?

As pro-democracy demonstrators hold firm, chef Rowley Leigh, who's in the city to open a new restaurant, says you couldn't hope to meet a nicer bunch
Paris Fashion Week: Karl Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'

Paris Fashion Week

Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'
Bruce Chatwin's Wales: One of the finest one-day walks in Britain

Simon Calder discovers Bruce Chatwin's Wales

One of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
10 best children's nightwear

10 best children's nightwear

Make sure the kids stay cosy on cooler autumn nights in this selection of pjs, onesies and nighties
Manchester City vs Roma: Five things we learnt from City’s draw at the Etihad

Manchester City vs Roma

Five things we learnt from City’s Champions League draw at the Etihad
Martin Hardy: Mike Ashley must act now and end the Alan Pardew reign

Trouble on the Tyne

Ashley must act now and end Pardew's reign at Newcastle, says Martin Hardy
Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?