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Wednesday, 12 September 1984
Page: 894

Senator CHANEY (Leader of the Opposition) —I seek leave to make a personal explanation.

Leave granted.

Senator CHANEY —The Minister for Resources and Energy (Senator Walsh) has tabled documents which appear to be copies of cheques drawn on the National Bank of Australasia Ltd and certain papers relating to those cheques. As I understand it , he has not vouched for the documents; he has simply tabled them in the Parliament for whatever reason he might have, and I think we all know the reason . Apparently, on the back of at least one of the cheques there are some words which include the following: 'Northmore Hale donation to the Liberal Party'. ' Northmore Hale' is presumably short for Northmore Hale Davy and Leake, my old law firm, and I have made statements about that previously in this place. It is also the old law firm of Mr Ian Douglas Temby, who is the Director of Public Prosecutions appointed by this Government recently and, may I say, appointed since these allegations were originally made in this place by Senator Walsh. I repeat the assurances that I gave the Senate on an earlier occasion about my non -involvement in anything relating to tax evasion. I also say that I have been in touch with the firm of Northmore Hale, which told me that it has not been a party to making any donations to the Liberal Party through, for, or on behalf of Mr Christo Moll or, indeed, on its own behalf.

The politics of smear are being used. These documents refer to various people and they were obviously tabled by the Minister for that purpose. I say to the Government with very great seriousness that if it is being suggested that there is some impropriety on the part of Northmore Hale or of its past or present members, who include Mr Temby and me, I think the Government has a duty to do something about it. It has a duty either to dispose of Mr Temby or to give him a clearance. I suggest that it will find it difficult to clear Mr Temby without giving me the same bill of health. I regard the Minister for Resources and Energy as a man who is prepared to stoop to any lengths in this place to smear his opponents. I know that a good many rough things are done and said in politics, but I believe that in this area there is no propriety in what is being done. I simply say to the Government that if in tabling these documents it is suggesting impropriety on my behalf or on behalf of my firm, it has a clear and obvious public duty to do something about it.

Senator Harradine —I seek leave to make a statement about an answer given by Senator Walsh yesterday, 11 September 1984.

Senator Georges —What about? Is it a personal explanation?

Senator Harradine —No, it is not a personal explanation.

Leave not granted.