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Wednesday, 3 December 1986
Page: 3254


Senator ARCHER —I direct my question to the Minister representing the Minister for Science. It concerns the reported decision of the Hawke Government to appoint Mr Neville Wran as Chairman of the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation. Is this the same Mr Neville Wran whose government employed Mr Al Grassby, a man whose evidence before the Nagle New South Wales Commission of Inquiry into the Police Investigation of the Death of Donald Bruce Mackay has been described as `extraordinarily unsatisfactory and evasive'? Is this the same Neville Wran who had to be dragged screaming into appointing the Nagle Commission, who arrogantly challenged the people of Griffith to put up and who tried to intimidate those who for years had sought an inquiry into the handling of the Donald Mackay murder inquiry? In light of these and countless other examples of the undistinguished record of the former Premier of New South Wales, plus Mr Wran's Government's pathetic record in the field of research and development, why is he to be appointed to this position ahead of the many eminent scholars, scientists and industrialists whose achievements and standing would have added much to the dignity and stature of the organisation both nationally and internationally?


Senator BUTTON —The Government has made no decision about filling the vacancy in the chairmanship of the CSIRO. Lest Senator Archer be in any doubt about the matter, the Mr Wran who is being considered, I believe, and who has been referred to in the Press is the same Mr Wran to whom Senator Archer referred.