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Superannuation



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MINISTER FOR FINANCE

PRESS RELEASE V

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EMBARGO NO: 84/l

STATEMENT BY THE MINISTER FOR FINANCE THE .

HON J.S. DAWKINS, MP

SUPERANNUATION

The Government has arranged for an investigation to be

made into the management and operations of the Superannuation Fund Investment Trust. This was announced

today by Mr John Dawkins, the Minister for Finance and

Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Public Service

Matters.

The examination relates to concerns expressed by the

Auditor-General in his report on the financial statements

of the Trust for 1981-82 and in a supplementary report he

had made to the Minister. Mr Dawkins recalled that he had

foreshadowed the examination in a statement in the

Parliament on 7 December 1983.

The Minister said that the examination will be conducted

by Mr John Monaghan, a Commissioner of the Australian

Public Service Board. Mr Monaghan was well acquainted

with the general administrative and personnel management

considerations bearing on the examination. He also had

had extensive experience in economic and financial areas,

having served for a lengthy period in senior positions in

the Departments of Treasury and Finance, including a term

as head of the Treasury's General Financial and Economic

Policy Division.

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Mr Monaghan would be given special leave from his ordinary

duties to enable him to conduct the examination. The Government had agreed that Mr Monaghan could obtain the

assistance of specialised consultants to advise him on particular aspects such as current commercial accounting and investment practice, relevant to the examination.

The examination is to cover matters of concern drawn to

the Minister's attention by the Auditor-General and any related matters arising in the course of the examination.

The report is to include any proposals considered

appropriate for remedying any shortcomings that are

identified, and is to be provided by 31 March 1984.

The Minister said he had accepted the offer of the

Chairman of the Trust, Mr R.A. Hammond, to stand aside as

Chairman while the examination proceeds. However, Mr Dawkins said, the Trust is currently engaged in complex

investment activities and proposals. Resignations and

retirements from the Trust last year have left Mr Hammond

as the only member of the Trust with more than recent acquaintance with the investments concerned. The

continuing conduct of these matters, which are significant

to the interests of contributors, could be made more difficult if the knowledge and experience of Mr Hammond in

regard to them was not available in the deliberations of

the Trust. Therefore, Mr Dawkins had decided that

Mr Hammond will continue to serve the Trust in the

capacity of an ordinary member of the Trust.

The Minister has appointed Mr W.J. Smith to act as

Chairman of the Trust for the duration of the examination. Mr Smith, the Director of the Grievance and

Appeals Bureau of the Public Service Board since 1979, is a barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court of Victoria

and has held various positions in the Australian Public

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Service and in Public Service Unions. Mr Smith is a

member of the Australian Society of Accountants and the Chartered Institute of Secretaries and Administrators and an Associate of the Royal Institute of Public

Administration. Mr Dawkins said Mr Smith's background

made him an ideal choice to look after contributors' interests in the Fund while the examination proceeded.

Mr Dawkins said the third member of the Trust during the

examination will be Mr R.C. Davey who has been the

Commissioner for Superannuation since the position was

created on 1 July 1976. Mr Davey has been reappointed by

the Governor-General as Commissioner for Superannuation

until 2 January 1990. Mr Davey holds the degree of

Bachelor of Commerce and was formerly an Assistant Secretary in the Treasury Department. Mr Davey was

Treasury adviser to the Parliamentary Retiring Allowances

Trust from 1969-1976. Mr Davey has been acting as a

part-time member of the Trust since July 1983 while

consultations related to filling of current vacancies on

the Trust proceeded.

Canberra

11 January 1984