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Tuesday, 27 May 2003
Page: 15057

Mrs CROSIO (4:38 PM) —I thank you for your explanation, Mr Speaker, but I have a further question. I would like to have standing order 144 more clearly defined. It states:

Questions should not contain—

(a) statements of facts or names of persons unless they are strictly necessary to render the question intelligible and can be authenticated;

In my particular case I did not use the name of the person—even though I have the name of that person—who I indicated was giving evidence yesterday; I used the name of the chief executive officer. It had to be used in order to make sense of the question. I asked whether she would have to work 100 years to earn what he would have been paid, and that is why I needed his name there. I cannot believe that this is an example where that is correct.

The SPEAKER —I have indicated to the member for Prospect that I will gleefully apply the standing order more rigorously. Let me offer an explanation to her: had she simply used the term `chief executive of Telstra' the name would not have been used and the understanding of the question would have been exactly the same, which is what that section of standing order 144 provides. The question was perfectly intelligible without the specific name, as the office would have implied the name. But since she invites me to be more diligent about it, I will certainly do so.