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Tuesday, 7 August 1906

Mr DEAKIN (BALLAARAT, VICTORIA) (Minister for External Affairs) - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follow : -

1.   Yes,to the Prime Minister's and Attorney-

General's Departments.

3.   Yes.

Mr. WEBSTER(for Mr. Brown) asked the Prime Minister, upon notice -

1.   Whether his attention has been called to a. telegram in the Age, of the 2nd instant, stating that the High Courthad delivered judgment in the case of Strachan v. the Commonwealth of Australia, in whichplaintiff was non-suiterf on the plea that the Commonwealth was not responsible for acts committed by British New Guinea officials?

2.   Was this plea of non-liability raised by theCommonwealth Government?

3.   Was it known or supposed that this nonliability existed when Parliament was asked to vote the salaries of those officers?

4.   Is it proposed to ask for are-vote of salaries, under the conditions disclosed by this decision?

5.   Is it proposed to bring British New Guinea under Commonwealth control; and, if so, when is it proposed to take the necessary action to this end?

Mr DEAKIN - The answers are as follow : -

1.   Yes.

3.   Yes, by its counsel.

3.   and 4. Parliament has not voted the salaries of British New Guinea officials. The fact that the Commonwealth was not legally liable for the actions of British New Guinea officials has always been known.

5.   Yes, immediately.

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