Abbott says staffers to face sack over leaks

PRIME Minister Tony Abbott has pledged to his Coalition colleagues that political staffers caught briefing the media will face the sack.

After his leadership was tested on Monday, Mr Abbott reportedly told the party room meeting yesterday giving reporters background information to use against ministers would be considered a "sackable offence" for political staffers.

While the political staffers generally keep out of the limelight, Mr Abbott's chief of staff Peta Credlin was believed to be the focus of the comment, as concerns about her influence over the PM were expressed again yesterday.

The Prime Minister's Office has previously been criticised for its role in vetting political staff appointments for ministers.

Mr Abbott pledged on Monday to do away with the procedure as he promised a more "collegial" government.

Asked about staffing issues, Cabinet ministers Julie Bishop and Scott Morrison both said yesterday they would not "lecture" the prime minister on his staff, and they would not expect him to lecture them on the issue.



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