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Thursday, 28 April 1921

Senator PAYNE (Tasmania) .- I think that the explanation which has been given by the Minister (Senator Millen) must be regarded as satisfactory to- the Committee. The honorable gentleman seeks to insure that no injustice shall be done to those men who, during four years of strenuous work on the battlefield,, earned their commissions,, and proved their fitness to command men. We desire to make our Citizen Forces as valuable as possible, and it would be an injustice to those Forces' if' the officers- of whom I speak were' prevented from giving' their services to- the country in time of' peace. I am glad that the explanation has been given so- lucidly by the Minister. ' That is- the reason' why I asked him what later clause must be read in con junction- with that which we are now considering.

Senator Pearce - Clause 11.

Senator PAYNE - That is so. I am quite prepared to vote, for the repeal of section 16a of the principal Act,, with a view to the substitution of something which will be more, effective;

Clause agreed to.

Clause 9 - '

Section seventeen of the Principal. Act is amended by omitting sub-section (I) thereof and inserting in its stead the following subsection : - , " (1) An officer may at any time, by writing under his hand, tender the resignation of his commission, and a resignation so tendered, unless sooner withdrawn or accepted, shall take effect at the expiration of three months after the tender thereof unless a time of war exists at the date of such tender or expiration, in which case it shall take effect at the expiration of three months after the cessation of the time of war:

Provided that an officer who is. a graduate of the Military College shall not, during the first eight years of his service as an officer, be entitled to resign his commission except; on ' the approval of the Military Board and upon payment of the prescribed amount."

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