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Notice given 22 April 2003

*1402  Senator Sherry: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations—What was the total cost of each of the following surveys: (a) 1990 Australian Workplace Industrial Relations Survey; and (b) 1995 Australian Workplace Industrial Relations Survey.

*1403  Senator Allison: To ask the Minister representing the Prime Minister—

(1) With reference to a claim made by the Prime Minister before the war that only the threat of force by the United States of America (US) allowed the United Nations Monitorings Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) weapons inspectors back into Iraq, and given that it was the threat of force by Washington which pulled the weapons inspectors out of Iraq in March 2003 before they could complete their work (as in December 1998), does the Prime Minister now concede that the threat of force failed again to disarm Iraq of its weapons of mass destruction.

(2) What is the Government’s response to the claim of the Executive Chairman of UNMOVIC, Dr Blix, that the US was guilty of ‘fabricating’ evidence against Iraq to justify the war, and his belief that the discovery of weapons of mass destruction had been replaced by the main objective of the US of toppling Saddam Hussein (The Guardian , 12 April 2003).

(3) With reference to claims made by the Prime Minister before the war that there was no doubt that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and that that this was the primary reason for Australia’s participation in the ‘coalition of the willing’, what is the Prime Minister’s position now that, even after the collapse of the regime in Baghdad, no weapons of mass destruction have been found despite United States Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld’s claim to know where they are.

(4) Given the Prime Minister’s statements that ‘regime change’ was only a secondary concern for Australia, does the Government agree that the primary justification for the war may prove to be a lie.

(5) If, as the Prime Minister repeatedly claimed, Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and Saddam Hussein could not be contained or deterred, what is the Government’s analysis of why they were not used in the regime’s terminal hours against the invading US, United Kingdom and Australian forces.

(6) With reference to the Prime Minister’s argument that stopping the spread of weapons of mass destruction was a primary motive for Australia’s participation in a war against Iraq: (a) is the Government concerned that one of the direct effects of the war may be the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction to third parties, including other so called ‘rogue states’ and possibly terrorist groups, and (b) what analysis has the Government done of this likelihood, and (c) can details be provided.

(7) Does the Prime Minister now regret saying just before the war (at the National Press Club and elsewhere) that Saddam Hussein could stay on in power providing he got rid of his weapons of mass destruction, thus allowing him to continue the repression of Iraqis; if so, what circumstances altered the Prime Minister’s view.

*1404  Senator Allison: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs—

(1) How many children are currently held in detention centres in Australia and offshore.

(2) What are the schooling and pre-school arrangements at each detention centre for these children, including: (a) hours of instruction per week; (b) subjects provided; (c) extracurricular activities; and (d) qualifications of teachers providing instruction, including experience in teaching non-English speaking children.

(3) Where schooling takes place inside detention centres rather than at the local school, can reasons be provided for this segregation in each case.

(4) Can copies of memoranda of understanding with state and territory governments with regard to detainees accessing regular schools be provided.

(5) What is the cut-off age after which schooling is not provided.

(6) How many young detainees under state and territory school-leaving age are not provided with schooling.

(7) (a) What are the aims of the schooling provided to detainee children; and (b) what has been done to evaluate its effectiveness.

*1405  Senator Lundy: To ask the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts—

(1) On what date did the department first approach the private sector with the intention of upgrading its website.

(2) (a) Which companies were approached for this opportunity; and (b) on what basis were these companies chosen.

(3) At that time, what was the timetable for the implementation of the upgrade.

(4) At that time, what was the budget allowance for the project in relation to the following areas: (a) website development; (b) the running environment for the site once it was live; (c) hardware; (d) software; (e) services to implement the software; and (f) any other areas.

(5) Can details be provided of the process by which Fujitsu Australia was awarded the final contract.

*1406  Senator Lundy: To ask the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts—With reference to the answer to a previous question on notice: (a) in the category of “Tender development/assessment, advertising” what specific costs made up the figure of $71 771.18; (b) in the category of “Website development” what specific costs made up the figure of $1,212,809.58; (c) in the category of “Hardware” what specific costs made up the figure of $661,426.00; (d) in the category of “Software” what specific costs made up the figure of $927,705.90; (e) in the category of “Hosting and support services” what specific costs made up the figure of $956,046.51; and (f) in the category of “Enhancements” what specific costs made up the figure of $181,677.64 (in each instance can the costs be itemised).

*1407  Senator Lundy: To ask the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts—

(1) What is the current version of Vignette software used by the department.

(2) Is there any intention to upgrade to the latest version of that software; if so, what are the additional costs associated with such an upgrade, including software, services and maintenance costs.

*1408  Senator Lundy: To ask the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts—

(1) What attention has been given to ensuring that the department’s website complies with web content accessibility guidelines such as those suggested by the World Wide Web Consortium.

(2) How many separate failure incidents are generated when the World Wide Web Consortium ‘validator’ is run over the department’s website.