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Thursday, 25 September 2014
Page: 7253

Senator BRANDIS (QueenslandDeputy Leader of the Government in the Senate, Vice-President of the Executive Council, Minister for Arts and Attorney-General) (20:46): No, because in those circumstances the provisions of section 35P(3) would apply which exempts from liability disclosure:

(a) in connection with the administration or execution of this Division—

that is, this division of the ASIO Act—

(b) for the purposes of any legal proceedings arising out of or otherwise related to this Division or of any report of any such proceedings; or

(c) in accordance with any requirement imposed by law; or—

And this is most immediately relevant to your question, Senator—

(d) in connection with the performance of functions or duties, orthe exercise of powers, of the Organisation.

If, for example, the director-general were to make a decision to disclose a matter then, given the powers and discretions conferred on the director-general by the ASIO Act, it is very difficult to see how that would not be an act done in connection with the performance of a function or duty or the exercise of power vested in him by the ASIO Act.

The TEMPORARY CHAIRMAN ( Senator Bernardi ): The question is that amendment (6) on sheet 7579 be agreed to.

Question negatived.