The resignations submitted by the board of NBN Co were requested by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
Chairman Siobhan McKenna, Terrence Francis, Alison Lansley, Michael Quigley, Kerry Schott and Richard Turchini all turned in their resignations yesterday. Brad Orgill was the only board member who did not.
The move seems to be to make room for a new board, hand picked by Turnbull. It is expected that former Telstra chief executive Ziggy Switkowski will be named chairman. Current board member Kerry Schott is also expected to remain on the board.
A petition on Change.org against the Liberal government's "fibre-to-the-node" internet plan — as opposed to the original "fibre-to-the-home" NBN plan — has so far gained over 260,000 signatures from Australian voters.
However, Turnbull has responded negatively to the petition. He has excoriated the Labor government's handling of the NBN on his blog. "The NBN project at present is running over budget and way behind schedule. At the current rate of progress, it will take decades to complete and close to AU$100 billion," he said. "The Labor government has not been honest with the public about the NBN. They never conducted a cost-benefit analysis. They have sought at every turn to conceal the fact that the project has been failing to meet its targets."