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Tuesday, 6 March 1973
Page: 203

Mr GORTON (HIGGINS, VICTORIA) - Does the Minister for Defence agree that it is strange indeed that a man who had served him faithfully for 6 years should tender a resignation to take rapid effect without giving any reasons whatsoever for such tendering? Does the Minister also agree that it is equally strange that he, the employer, should accept and indeed seek to accelerate that resignation, again without giving any reasons for doing so? Can the Minister explain this strange and almost unbelievable occurrence?

Mr BARNARD - This matter is related to the circumstances as outlined in the document which is before the Leader of the Opposition and which I have tabled in the House. I do not hesitate to say that I did worry about the reasons for Mr Lloyd's resignation. I inquired of the Department as to the instructions which had been given and was informed that Mr Lloyd had not been told that he could not attend the discussions which were to take place. This was apparently a result of a misunderstanding by the Department which I have now taken steps to rectify. In view of Mr Lloyd's past relationship with me I can only regret that this unfortunate misunderstanding has occurred and that, because of subsequent oversights, I have not until now been informed of the real reason for Mr Lloyd's resignation. As I said to the House earlier, I shall be in touch with Mr Lloyd about these matters.

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