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Thursday, 25 August 1994
Page: 322

Senator CHAPMAN —by leave—I have just had a chance to have a brief look at the documents which have been tabled. It is clear from a perusal of those documents that they do not comply with the order of the Senate which was passed as a formal resolution last Tuesday. There are a number of exclusions from the material tabled.

  All we have in the documents is a memo of advice to the minister regarding the procedures which he must follow for the appointments of Ms Wendy Silver, the re-appointment of Ms Janine Walker and the appointment of Mr John Bannon to the board of the ABC. We do not have any of the cabinet documents in relation to these appointments. Of course, that is what was particularly sought when this issue was raised. The documents we have received are pretty innocuous.

  That memo indicates that the minister must clear the proposed appointment of each individual with the senior government minister from each relevant state; he must obtain assurances from each appointee that there are no potential conflicts of interest or embarrassment likely to be caused to the government from the personal financial affairs of the appointee; and finally there is a requirement to write to the Prime Minister seeking that the appointment be put on the agenda for cabinet.

  These documents do not in any way respond to the matters on which the opposition sought answers when we originally raised this issue. This response by the government is totally inadequate, and we will reserve our right to take further action in this chamber on this matter.