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Thursday, 3 November 2011
Page: 8182


Senator JOHNSTON (Western Australia) (15:06): I move:

That the Senate take note of the explanation.

This is an entirely unsatisfactory situation. The foreign minister has had eight months to answer these questions, no matter how complex. Indeed, I have given this minister, in the Senate, almost a further month of grace because his good officers came to me and said, 'Look, we'd like some more time.' And we did give them some more time. This is typical of this foreign minister, who swans around over at CHOGM performing like a rock star but all the while treats this parliament with contempt. There are very many important questions that have not been answered because this government do not want to disclose the answers. They do not want any scrutiny and transparency is their enemy. I urge the minister to provide answers to those questions in a timely manner. Eight months is a disgrace.

Question agreed to.