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Thursday, 30 June 1994
Page: 2367


Senator MICHAEL BAUME —I give notice that, on the next day of sitting, I shall move:

  That the Senate—

  (a)notes:

    (i)that, during a Senate Estimates hearing held in the week beginning 19 June 1994, the Minister for the Environment, Sport and Territories (Senator Faulkner) said he was not aware of any problems relating to the legal protection of witnesses before the Stewart Inquiry conducted by the Australian Soccer Federation (ASF) into the overseas transfer fee issue raised by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's Four Corners program,

    (ii)that, among a whole range of allegations being made, are suggestions of money laundering, suitcases full of cash and mafia and drugs involvement, reinforcing the view that a level of protection of witnesses may be required for a satisfactory outcome of the inquiry,

    (iii)that the Minister, who welcomed the ASF's public inquiry now being chaired by former NSW Supreme Court judge and royal commissioner, Mr Donald Stewart, said that he would be seeking advice from the Australian Sports Commission on the matter, and

    (iv)the concerns now being expressed by the chairman of the Australian Soccer Player's Association, Mr Taliadoros, who has recommended that union members not give evidence to the inquiry without protection from `possible repercussions'; and

  (b)calls on the Minister to advise whether he plans to give any status to the inquiry which would provide necessary legal protection to witnesses.