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Monday, 22 November 2010
Page: 3217

Mr BRENDAN O’CONNOR (Minister for Home Affairs, Minister for Justice and Minister for Privacy and Freedom of Information) (5:33 PM) —The purpose of the National Broadcasting Legislation Amendment Bill 2010 is to amend the Australian Broadcasting Corporation Act 1983 and the Special Broadcasting Service Act 1991. The amendments would also reinstate the ABC’s staff-elected director. In effect, this bill fulfils two important and longstanding commitments by Labor. We undertook in our national platform in 2007 to end political interference in the ABC by introducing a new transparent and democratic board appointment process. Indeed, this will be the realisation of that objective. It will also be the realisation of the goals that we set out as a government to ensure that there would be an independent and democratic board appointment process in which non-executive directors would be appointed.

This is one of my shorter contributions to the debate on this matter, but it is an important bill and the government is very happy to commend it to the House.