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Thursday, 14 May 1942

Mr SPEAKER - If the answer that the honorable gentleman received was not clear, he may ask another question on the subject for the purpose of clarification but not for the purposes of argument.

Mr HARRISON - The second point with which the Minister did not deal was -

Is he aware that the secretary of the Northern Collieries stated to-day that, since action was taken under the regulations covered by StatutoryRule168, permission was granted in writing by the chairman of the Coal Commission for the pit not to be prepared for work until further notice?

Mr WARD - I am not aware that the mine-owners had the pit ready for work at the time mentioned by the honorable gentleman. As a matter of fact, I am not so much in their confidence as is the honorable gentleman. As to the second point, I have not been advised 'that any communications have passed between the coal-owners and the Coal Commissioner, but now that the honorable member has mentioned such communications - and I take it that he has done so authoritatively - I shall ascertain what communications have passed, and I am sure that I shall read them with great interest.

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