Chief executive steps down from Laing O'Rourke amid allegations

16 October 2013


International engineering and construction group, Laing O'Rourke, has announced that David Stewart has stepped down as chief executive officer of its Australian business, and as a member of the Group Executive Committee, with immediate effect.

In light of recent articles in the Australian media relating to business practices at Leighton Holdings, Stewart has stepped down to enable him to deal with the allegations made against Leighton during his tenure as a senior executive there.

Laing O┬╣Rourke Group Chief Executive, Anna Stewart, commented: "I am grateful to David for taking the tough decision to step down at this time. His action respects the exemplary business values and ethical practices that Laing O'Rourke maintains through its relationships with our clients and stakeholders."

Meanwhile, David Savage, Leighton's former chief operating officer and head of its international business, has stepped down as a non-executive director of UK engineering group Keller "to enable him to deal with the allegations made against Leighton during his time as a senior executive there", the company said.

The resignations follow reports by Fairfax Media that senior executives at Leighton were aware of widespread improper behaviour within the international arm.