Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Full Day's HansardDownload Full Day's Hansard    View Or Save XMLView/Save XML

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Wednesday, 14 November 1973
Page: 3291


Mr SPEAKER - My attention has been drawn to standing order 153 as it relates to a question asked by the Deputy Leader of the Australian Country Party. Standing order 153 states:

Questions shall not be asked which reflect on or are critical of the character or conduct of those persons whose conduct may only be challenged on a substantive -motion, and notice must be given of questions critical of the character or conduct of other persons.

I am also informed that any payments made or privileges granted to Mr Young by outside organisations are not the responsibility of the Prime Minister.


Mr Sinclair - Mr Speaker, I raise a point of order. In no way was the question which I asked critical of Mr Young. It was questioning an area of the Prime Minister's responsibility. Surely those who are appointed to the Prime Minister's personal staff are within the responsibility of the Prime Minister. It is the responsibility of the Prime Minister in .this Parliament to answer to us at question time as to the nature of the policy references and the policy advice that will be given to him in the course of his duties. For that reason, I believe that the quesion was completely in order.


Mr SPEAKER - Order! I have given the ruling on the advice that I have received that any payments made or privileges granted to

Mr Youngby any outside organisation are not the responsibility of the Prime Minister.


Mr Snedden - I rise to order to seek clarification of what you have said. A question was asked and the Prime Minister said that he would not answer it. Are you now stating that you intended to rule earlier that the question was out of order?


Mr SPEAKER -I have just explained that my attention was attracted to standing order 153 and I think the Leader of the Opposition should know by whom. Also the ruling that was given by me a moment ago was based on advice that I received.


Mr Snedden - Have you ruled the question out of order?


Mr SPEAKER - No.


Mr Sinclair - I rise to order-


Mr SPEAKER - At the time I did not rule the question out of order. That was quite obvious. The Prime Minister need not answer a question unless he thinks fit. That is a matter for his determination. I have pointed out the application of standing order 153 for guidance on future occasions when honourable members ask questions which include criticism of the conduct of people.


Mr Anthony - I rise to order also to seek clarification. I take it that the question asked by the Deputy Leader of the Country Party was in order today and has not been ruled out of order but you have issued a warning against further questions of that nature.


Mr SPEAKER - That is absolutely correct.







Suggest corrections