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Tuesday, 1 February 1994
Page: 6

Dr HEWSON —I refer the Prime Minister to his statement that the conduct of the honourable member for Maribyrnong would be judged against appropriate standards of ministerial behaviour. Do appropriate standards include the standards, outlined by the Prime Minister's predecessor in his statement of 22 September 1983 called `Public duty and private interests', which Mr Hawke said were a hallmark in the development of this parliament? What other standards do they include?

Mr KEATING —I would have thought it was pretty obvious that, in the event that, as is Mr Griffiths's confidence, no charges would be laid against him and he has not committed any wrongdoing, the fact that nothing is laid against him does not in a sense provide any commentary whatsoever on his ministerial behaviour or ministerial conduct. Therefore, whether police charges are laid against whoever, but in the event not laid against Mr Griffiths, provides no commentary on his behaviour. So, understandably, he has sought to have his ministerial conduct subjected to an examination so that everyone can know—the community, the country—

Dr Hewson —By what standards?

Mr SPEAKER —Order!

Mr Tuckey —What benchmark do you put on that?

Mr Melham —Certainly not Tuckey's standards.

Mr SPEAKER —Order! The honourable member for Banks and the honourable member for O'Connor.

Mr KEATING —that, in a judgment being made about his conduct in this matter, his conduct was becoming of a minister. As I said earlier, the government will announce the terms of reference of the inquiry when it is announced. I should have thought it was a very simple matter.

Mr Tuckey —What are the standards? Let's hear what they are.

Mr KEATING —Wait until the terms of reference are tabled.