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Tonight - the way ahead -

Kevin' 07's plans for Kevin

'08. I stand ready for the

responsibility of

Government. Murder most foul -

the parents accused of killing

her daughter. Gravely ill but

he won't let James Hardie rest

in peace. And ethical

breakthrough - stem cells would

using human embryos. These

scientists have achieved

finding the holy grail of the

stem cell field. Good evening.

Erin Phillips with and News.

Three days out and his kfts

growing, Kevin Rudd is daring

to look beyond Saturday'

election to the detail of

Government. Today, he outlined

plans for his first year in

office. One f the first things

he'd do, if elected, is sign up

to the Kyoto agreement. The

Labor leader has also set

himself a 100-day deadline to

take action on public

hospitals. What is it about

politicians and timeliness? It

was supposed to be a debate

with Julia and she not here

. The woman who would be Deputy

PM turned up 15 minutes late

without apology for fire and brimstone with Peter Costello. Do you want to go

through them? I don't want

Wayne's statistics. You have to

go to the website. Kevin Rudd

was on time at the National

Press Club but only just bit

his tongue. It's not something

we pulled out of our... I was

going to say ear but I won't

say that now. Pulled oud of the

air, that's what I meant to

say. Oh, dear. Betraying his

confidence with just three days

to go, the Opposition leader is

now prepared to look beyond the

election, o top of the list for

a Rudd Government would be signing the Kyoto protocol

immediately. With mandatory

renewable energy targets in

place within 400 days. Fixing

the Federation as he call s it

would be another priority,

promise ing a meeting with the

State Labor Premiers within 100

days and negotiate an end to

the blame game on hospital s or

seize them from the

States. That will be very

interesting and perhaps

colourful negotiation if we

win. Also within the first 12

months, Mr Rudd would start

rolling out his promise of a

computer for all 1 million senior secondary school

students: Frankly, that's a

fairly big slice of work. And a

lot of promises. For the first

time the Opposition Leader

hintded that with inflation on

the rise he might ditch some of

his pledges if Treasurer believes them Australian Ied

for able. We will be very

mindful of what the secretary

of the Treasury says. Harking

back to children overborn and

John Howard's evers to restrict

inquiry, Kevin Rudd is

promising to restore the

investigative powers of the

Senate. I think there's been a

bit of a cancer at work in

recent years. Also with

accountability in mind he's

committed to press conferences

after every Cabinet meeting. I

am prepared to accept the

challenge you've laid

down. Kevin Rudd is still

predicting a tight result on

Saturday but his behaviour is

suggest ing otherwise. John

Howard is directly appealing to

those thinking of

discertificating him. When you

change the Government, the

country changes. Is When you

change the Government, the

country changes. It didn't work

for Paul Keating. The navy is

taking 16 people to Christmas

Island tonight after rescuing

from a sink boetd off the

Western Australian coast. 10

children including a 6-month-old baby were on the

over crowded wooden boat when

it got into difficulty. I it's

thought to be from Indonesia.

The crew of a nearby oil tanker

took the group alongside and

offered food and water until

Navy rescue teams ariefrd.

There were no life

preservers on the boat. They

had limited pro s and so the

boat wasn't going too much

further. There was slow leak

they were managing with a pump.

But clearly they were in some

distress. What has brought them

to Australian waters, um, what

the circumstances are we don't

know the answer to that

yet. The 16 will go through

immigration processes on

Christmas Island. Although the

Government says no-one has made

a claim for asylum. The owners

of the oil tanker have reject

ed claim s by the Greens that

its crew was reluctant to help

because of the 'Tampa' incident

six years ago. Horrific claims

have emerged about the final

days of a 7-year-old girl who

allegedly starved to death. Her

parents have been charged with

murder. A court was told today

that she died a slow and

tortuous death in her home in Hawks Nest in Newcastle. The

child cannot be identified for legal reasons and a warning

this story contains some

disturbing

allegations. Documents tendered

in Wollongong court revealed

the 7-year-old was kept

prisoner in her own bedroom.

After years of isolation from

help and care, it's alleged she

literally wasted away. Her

emaciated body was ultimately

found by ambulance officers,

covered in urine, on a mattress

on her bedroom floor. The room

had little effects and was

littered with faeces. She was

clothing and three payers of wearing some items of bed

socks which had been on for an

extended period of time,

causing her skin to waste.

Police have ae ledged the

bedrooms were kept closed with

a rope and inside one of them

the little girl was dying a

slow and tortuous death.

Police say her parents,

Blakely and Sharyn Ward, went

to great lengths to avoid contact with government

agencies. They repeatedly

refused to answer the door or

told authorities there were no

children at home. But it's

alleged young voices could be

heard. The living conditions

were described as appalling.

Blakely and Sharyn Ward have

been charged with their

daughter's murder: They will face court again in January.

School principals say

they're concerned about the way

the Department of Community

Services is dealing with child

abuse. And they're furious that

a school survey critical of

DOCS performance has been

closed down. The principals are

speaking out regardless while

the State Government insists

there is no cover-up. Since

2001, school principals have

Department of Community been surveyed about how the

Services responds to child

abuse complaints. We want

action on the ground working

with the kids so that we're not

sending them back into

situations of neglect and

situations of abuse. This year,

after the questionnaire was

sent out by email, the State

Government ordered that it be stopped. What's important here

is to make sure that

information about vulnerable

family, information about vulnerable children is not

trafficked on the Internet by

principals or anybody else. The

Education Minister says there's

no cover-up. He says the survey could have breached privacy

laws. But school principals say

it's all about politics. In the

four surveys that we've

conducted since000 1, not one

principal and we've had

thousand of responses in total,

not one principal has ever

reveal veeld one name or

family. Several hundred

principals answered the survey

before the ban came into force.

They recorded a significant

increase in the number of

reports to DOCSes over the last

year. With the department only

intervened in 10% of the

cases. Teachers are telling us

that neglect and abused kids

are falling through the cracks

and the response of the Iemma

Labor Government shut them

up. The principals say they

often bypass DOCS now and go

straight to welfare agencies to

provide food and clothing for

children. We're after direct

intervention with families and

with children. We're not really

all that interested in

receiving a simple faxed letter

from a DOCS officer. The

Education Minister says school

principals should make

submissions to the Child

Protection Commission, to be

headed by retired judge James

Wood. His doctor says he has

only days to live - but asbestos campaigner Bernie

Banton is still on his mission,

doggedly pursue ing James

Hardie and its insurers from

his hospital bed. Mr Cant bantd

bant is seeking further

com#3e7b sation for the cancers

that are killing him h.'S too

weak to attend the hearing but

today he gave evidence to a

bedside tribunal. His visit to

Tony Abbott's office a few

weeks ago to urge the Minister

to subsidise cancer drugs was

the last time Bernie Banton was mobile. Gutless. There's some

gutless fleas around. While

Bernie Banton's will was still

strong today, the compensation

campaigner was too weak to get

out of his hospital bed. Instead, the Dust Diseases

Tribunal, headed by Justice

John O'Meally, travelled to

Concord Hospital where Mr

Banton is being treated for

mesothelioma. Bernie was

pretty weak this morning but he

managed to give his evidence.

Thankfully it didn't go too

long. He was asked a small

amount of question s which h

was able to answer. In his

evidence, Bernie Banton said he

had only learned in recent

weeks that an X-ray taken in

1937 while he was still taken

at James Hardie showed initial

expoerk ush of asbestos. He

went back to work for the

company for another 18 months.

He said it was disgraceful that

he wasn't told It meant a lot

to him that he was able to give

his evidence. And he was able

to talk a little bit about what

this disease has done to

him. Bernie Banton's lawyer

said he has been kement going

by kept going by this case and

hopes he will lifz to see its concludesed. This afternoon the

tribunal moved back into the

courtroom. There it heard

everyday from Bernie's

oncologist that he had only

days to live and he had made a

pact with his wife to return

home to die. There's been a

major breakthrough that could

take the ethic s argument aut

of stem cell research.

Scientists have manage to

reprogram human skin cell s to

make them function like screls.

It means the stem cells don't

have to come from human em

bios. Embryonic embryonics

have been hailed as the hut

future of medicine offering the

chance to create specialised cells for individual patients

to treat diseases. But a major

stumbling block has been the

use of embryos to gather the

cells. Now Japanese and

American researchers have

overcome that, using skin

cells. The scientists have

allowed the skin cells to take

on the Camillian-like

properties of embryonic stem

cells. They now can make any

tissue in the body. This is how

- they took skin cells and

injected them with a virus.

That virus prompted the skin

cells to reprogram themselves,

essentially turning them into

cells that mirror embryonic

stem cells. Australian experts

say the development will remove

many of the ethical concerns

about stem cell research.. The

real advantage from an ethical

point of view is you wouldn't

have to use a human embryo in

order to obtain these cells. And because the

breakthrough will allow greater

access to stem cells, major

advances in treating diseases

could come much south-eastern. So the sorts of

diseases that might be treated

using this kind of technology

are these which are caused by

the loss of cells or cells that

have stopped working in our

body - like Parkinson's, stroke

or spinal chord injury or

diabetes. It's un likely this

development will mean the end of embryonic stem cell research

straight away: Scientists don't

know how well the skin cells

function and whether the

technique is safe to use on

humans. Once cleared, though,

the skin cell technique is

considered relatively straight

forward and could be done in

laboratories around the world.

They're an un likely group

representing everything from

mining to conservation but

they've come together to call

for urgent action on climate

change. 15 of Australia's peak

interest groups have united or

an ad campaign demanding rapid

reductions in carbon emissions.

Their call for action coincide

with the latest report from the

United Nations showing that

countries like Australia are

pumping more carbon into the atmosphere than ever

before. The full page ads call

forrure jefnt action on climate

change. The un likely alliance

includes mining, farming,

medical, religious, business

and green groups. These are

people from all across Australian society, from all

walks of life and in fact

across the political spectrum

saying this issue is so

important we need decisive

action today. Globally,

emissions from industrialised

nations are at an all-time

high. The figures released by

the United Nations blame

transport as the key driver.

But the UN is satisfied members

of the Kyoto agreement will

come through by 2012. Countries

are beginning to put policies

in place in order to meet those

- their Kyoto

targets. Australia too so far

has refuse ed to ratify the

Kyoto deal. The UN survey

reveals Australian emissions

are 25% above the bench mark

1990 levels that but that falls

to 4.5% when a ban on land clearing is taken into account.

John Howard insists Australia's

doing OK without Kyoto. But

Labor says, if elected, it will

ratify the protocol to cut

Australia's pollution. Both

John Howard and Kevin Rudd have

vowed to person ally attend

next month's United Nations

talks in Bali. While Labor

might get Australia back to the

negotiating table, some believe

Australia still has to prove

it's take ing tough action at

home. Rich countries, developed

countries have to lead that

effort if we are to get

anywhere at all in the

international debate. The proof

will have to be put on the

table in Bali. The man who

personified white instrance

jeans has died. Ian Smith, the

former Prime Minister of

Rhodesia, was 88. His proud

boast in office was that black

rule would not come to pass in

1,000. Just four years later he

was a citizen of Robert

Mugabe's Zimbabwe. Smith #134i9

was a rebel with a kouz. He

believed black Africans were

unit Fit to rule their own

countries. I don't believe in

black majority rule ever in

Rhodesia. Not in 1,000

years. In the 1960s, colonial

governments were on the wane as

the winds of change blew

through the continent. As

Rhodesia's Prime Minister, Ian

Smith was on a mission to

maintain white minority rule.

He defied British Prime

Minister Harold Wilson and in

1965 made his new infamous un

lateral declaration of

independence. We the, the

Government of Rhodesia, do by

this proclamation adopt, enact

and goif the people of Rhodesia

a constitution annexed hereto.

God stave Queen. To many of the

white minority, he was hero as

illegal regime continued to

defy world opinion. But after

independence came armed

opposition and white border

farms were under attack.

Years of guerrilla war

eventually forced Ian Smith's

Rhodesia to the bargaining

table. In 1979, a deal emerged

at the Lancaster house peace

talks in London. Elections

were held and Robert Mugabe

took over as leader of

black-ruled Zimbabwe.

For white Zimbabweans and Ian

Smith it was the beginning of

the ends. He felt vind date

kaetd - vindicated by the later

ruin of Zimbabwe under the

Mugabe regime. Ian Smith died in exile in South Africa believing to tend that he was

right. Tonight's top story -

Kevin Rudd has been detailing

his plans for Government if he

wins the election. And still

toe come - make or break time

for the soccer Olyroos. The worst drought in a

century has seen the Professors

of grand handler . WB plunge by

more than half. It's after-tax

profit of over $27 million was

down 53% for the year. The

oil-for-food scandal has hurt

it and lefrt it facing a number

of law suits. We don't assume

that we will lose all the

earnings we currently generate

from marketing wheat overseas

however it's not possible to

give any exact guidance on the

level of earnings we see there

as clearly it depends on a

couple of external factors -

that is, the Government policy after the election no matter

who is in power. Despite the

profit slump, AWB share s rose

today. Investors were

encouraged by the company's diversification into other

areas like agribusiness and international commodities

trading. On the markets, oil

has raced to another record

price of just below $100 US a

barrel. Here is Alan

Kohler. The oil Ministers of

OPEC met in Saudi Arabia this

week and declared that they

wanted to try to stabilise the

oil market. That went well.

Today the price jumped 3.5% to

just below the $100 mark and

the highest price in history

for West Texas intermedia. It's

the good thing the oil

Ministers didn't try to push

the price up! Actually it's

about the US dollar rnlt. The

oil price has basically gone up

this year with the euro

exchange rate as the US dollar

has fallen. So there are two

oil prices - the US dollar one

which we always quote because

this's the currency that oil is

traded in and the euro price of

oil. This graph tracks them

both since the start of last

year. Up to the start of this

year the two prices moved

roughly together but this year

as the US dollar had hit the

skids because of the subprime

crisis, they've drifted apart.

The local share market fell

again today by a bit more than

half a per cent. The retreat

was led by the banks. In line

with the flight from banking

stocks around the world. Rio Tinto fell but BHP Billiton

recovered a bit as it chief

executive continues his global

roadshow selling the proposed

merge wer Rio. Wall Street

spent much of the session in

the red because of the banks

sell-off but in 2 last half

hour Exxon mobile shares jumped

because of the rising oil price

and took the whole market with

it. But that tone was loes when

the Asian markets opened this

afternoon and they all fell.

And finally as tu row continue

s its march upwards on global

foreign exchange marts -

markets, the Australian dollar

has slipped below 60 u row

cents for the first time since

early September. If you're

about to visit Japan, prepare

to be fingerprinted on arrival.

It's part of tough new

immigration laws designed to

catch terrorists. But business

people and human rights

advocates say the system is

discrim that tory and will harm

Japan's international image.

Shane McLeod reports. There

were long queues, and some

signs of frustration. The first

day of Japan's new immigration

system had its share of

teething problems.

TRANSLATION: The system started

today. It's a new system so

we're a little confused. But

we're making efforts and aiming

for things to take the normal

length of time. From now on,

all foreigners arriving in

Japan will have their

fingerprints taken along be

their photographs. The system

mirror s the United States immigration procedures,

introduced a after the

September 11 attacks. Japan

says the system is needed to

fight crime and terrorism.

TRANSLATION: The fingerprints

and photograph s are important personal information so they

will be kept by the Government

and handled properly. Countering terrorism

is the reason for this new

system Japan says and having to

submit to fingerprinting is a

small price to pay for

security. Critics say the new

system is cumbersome and

intrusive and has little chance

of achieving its aims. Some

fear the scheme could result in

discrimination.

TRANSLATION: We fear that

ordinary people will start to

be prejudiced against foreigners thinking foreigners

are special groups needing stronger surveillance because

they are easily connected with crime. But those who have submitted to the new checks

don't seem too concerned. If

this helps to make flying

safer, why not. I don't see any

trouble with it because what is

going on around the world today

I think it's time somebody

start to do it. All foreigners

arriving in Japan are being fingerprinted except for

children, diplomats and some

permanent residents. Former

world champion kayak er Nathan

Baggely has been arrested on

drug charges. He was arrested

this afternoon in a police raid

on the NSW north coast. He and his brother have been accused

of making and supplying MDMA,

the chemical used to produce ecstasy. Australia's Olympic soccer team has qualified for

next year's bay jaing Games

after a onall draw with North

Korea. Mark Milligan scored the

Olyroos goal in the 70th

minutes. The equation for the

Olyroos was simple - a win or a

disrau against North Korea

would secure their spot at the

bay gym Games and maintain

their record of qualifying for

every Olympics since 1988. But

the Olyroos made a terrible

start conceding an early

goal. What Graeme Arnold was

hoping to avoid. Shortly after hoping to avoid. Shortly after

the Olyroos were in trouble again as North Korea piled on

the pressure. Off the line. Almost number two for New York. The Australians were

struggling to come to grips

with their opponents and the

freezing conditions. The Olyroo

s couldn't finish off their

best chance of the first half

and trailed one-0 at the

break. Midway through the

second half, Australia final ly

found the goal it needed,

thanks to captain Mark

Milligan. Australia have equal

ides. The Olyroos heldor on for

the draw to guarantee their

berth at Beijing. With doubts

raised over his fitness, Stuart

MacGill exercise his right to

stay siel yentd on his

immediate future. Knee and

finger problem s didn't help MacGill's cause against Sri

Lanka and there's derns over

his ability to go against the

India tour. I think he realises

he has some physical work to

do. The Australians went their

separate ways today before the

one-day squad gathers to take

on New Zealand. For a player

who has made the most of his

return to the Test team, it's

back to inter state cricket for

Phil Jaques until his next

international game on boxing

day. I don't see it being an

issue. I will have plenty of

Crick yet under my

belt. Australia has maintained

its winning form in

trans-Tasman battles. The

Australian Steeler s wheelchair

rugby team took on the New

Zealand wheel wheel at the

Oceania Championships. There

were more hits than a Bledisloe

Cup test. And inspired display

from 18-year-old Riley Batt

helped Australia win 41-38. We

were coming into the game as

underdogs. We knew we could

beat them but we had to finish

the game off and we did. The

winner of this tournament will

qualify for next year's Paralympics. Roger Federer's exhibition match with retired

great Pete Sampras went

according to expectations. The

36-year-old American start

strongly and took a 4-2 lead.

Not too many of those around

anymore. But the current world

number one powered past Sampras

to win in straight sets. They will play two more matches

later this week. NSW continues

to dominate the four-day match

against Tasmania at the SCG.

The blues declared their first

innings at 7/512 with Brad

Haddin becoming his side second

century maker. Doug Bollinger

grabbed three wickets before

the tiekers had pasted 10.

Tropfest is about to turn sweet

16 and spread its wintion.

Australia's large est short

Film Festival and taking on its

greatest challenge yet ie. A

chance for budding movie make

ers to crack the big time. We

were the same but different.

'September' is the first feet

irfilm to come out of Tropfest.

The creator John Polson wants

to give short film make terse

opportunity they dreamed out. A

lot of people come through the

festival achieve a great amount

of success, end up in lime

light on the night but the next

morning don't know what to do

with themselves and how to

parlay that success into

something real like a career in

film or television. Peter

Carstairs was a Tropfest

finalist which made him

eligible to enter his script

for a future. It was selected

as the recipient and I wasn't

to the festival and overnight

walked out with a feature film

deal. Amazing. Set in the

Western Australian Wheatbelt in

the late '60s, 'September'

follows two young friends and

how change s social attitudes

lead to their friendship

falling apart. Initially

Tropfest set a budget of $1

million but it blew out to $2.4

million. Tropfest has a profile

that helped us out when it came

to raising the money. It wasn't

like starting from scratch.

It's, you know, and needless to

say that definitely helped the

process. But for most

Australian film-makers

especially those chasing their

first feature, raise ing

finance sex extremely hard. And

it keeps get ing tougher as

audiences show less interest in

Australian films. Vrnl It's a

country with change ing tastes:

I don't know how we turn the

tastes around. If less and less

people are going the cinema,

it's harder to finance the

film. It's very

difficult. Difficult, yes, but

Peter Carstairs hopes

'September' might play a part

in getting aud yentionz s

interested again - audiences

interested again in Aussie

films. Some developing news on

the weather front now - there's

a severe thunderstorm warning

for Sydney, Graham? There is.

In fact we're look ing at the

prospect of heavy rainfall

through the city but it's not

only confined to just Sydney.

All these radar echos that'

thunderstorms and it's expected

to bring the prospect of heavy

rain overnight. Some of the

good fall also continue

tomorrow. That rain slowly

edging towards the western

suburbs. Temperatures in Sydney

today - 24 on the coast, up to

31 out west. As we saw on the

radar, plenty of storms moving

into Sydney, expecting around

about 10 to 20mm across most

suburbs overnight tonight.

Through NSW in were widespread

severe thunderstorms, generally

& along the central and corn

tablelands. Heavier falls have

been along the southern an

central areas so far. And the

storms are due to a trough with

temperatures to its east,

warmer than the normal but out

west it has been cooler.

The cloud is in the east is

forming along the trough and

that's enhanced by an upper

low. The trough itself will

move to the north-east tomorrow

but the upper disturbance is

going to be much low er

movering and that will maintain

the unsettled weather across

eastern NSW well into the

weekend. A significant falls of

around 25 to 50mm possible

through southern and eastern

NSW over the next 24

hours. Plenty more rain on the

way for Melbourne and more

storms on the way for Darwin.

Yesterday I was suggesting

that the rainfall will be quite

isolated in the coming days but

models are now indicating some

more worth while falls and we

could see some of that push

through inland from Sunday into

Tuesday. It will be wet over

summer, according to this

figure. Tonight's top stories

again - Kevin Rudd has promised

immediate action on climate

change and health care if he

wins on Saturday. And a court's

been told how a 9-year-old girl

died a slow and tortuous death

at the hands of her parent.

That's ABC News for now. The

'7:30 Report' is next, featuring Opposition leader

Kevin Rudd. And for the latest

election news, don't forget ABC

News online. Goodnight.

Closed Captions by CSI

CC

Welcome to the program with

two days campaigning to go.

It's been a long year. Kevin Rudd made the Opposition

Leader's traditional final week

National Press Club appearance

today. Where a lot of the

questions were premised on asum

shofns a Labor victory.

Regardless of the strong trend

away from the Government in

poll ing throughout the year,

everyone who knows anything

about John Howard, including

Kevin Rudd, knows that you

would never write him off until

the last vote is counted. But

suddenly in the past few days

journalists want to talk about

the first 100 days, or the

first year of a Rudd

Government. Last night we spent

the whole program talking with

John Howard. Tonight, it's Mr

Rudd's turn. I spoke with the

Labor leader in his Canberra

office late today. Kevin Rudd,

I spent some time in the