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Thursday, 4 April 1946

Mr Anthony (RICHMOND, NEW SOUTH WALES) y asked the Minister for External Territories, upon notice -

1.   What are the terms of the appointment of Mr. Alexander Wilson as Administrator of Norfolk Island?

2.   What are the salary, allowances and expenses attached to such position?

3.   What previous administrative experience had Mr. Wilson for such position, and what qualifications were considered as justifying Mr. Wilson's appointment? 4.. Was the position advertised? 5. Was any returned soldier offered the position ?

6.   If not, was it considered that no returned soldier was available and suitable for such appointment?

Mr Ward (EAST SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for External Territories) - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follows : -

1.   Mr. AlexanderWilson has been appointed Administrator of Norfolk Island for a period of seven years from 1st January, 1946, pursuant to the provisions of the Norfolk Island Act 1913-1935 and the Administration Ordinance 1936 of Norfolk Island.

2.   Salary £1,000 per annum, with free furnished quarters and an entertainment allowance of £150 per annum.

3.   Mr. Wilsonhad long practical experience of agriculture, whilst his administrative ability had been demonstrated over a period of some years when he was assisting the Minister for Commerce and Agriculture in the difficult task of organizing Australia's food front.

4.   No.

5.   The qualifications of all those who were considered suitable and available for the position were considered.

6.   Mr. Wilsonwas considered to have the best qualifications for the position of those referred to in the reply to question 5. '.

Argentina : Statement by

Mr. E.J. Ward, M.P.

Mr Rankin (BENDIGO, VICTORIA) n asked the Minister for

Transport, upon notice -

1.   Is it a fact, as reported in a Sydney morning newspaper of the 7th May, 1945, that he said that he viewed with misgiving the inclusion of Argentina in the San Francisco Conference, and that he went on to say, "How could there be lasting peace when Fascists and Nazis of that character were given a voice in planning for world peace"?

2.   If so. in view of the fact that Australia's vote was recorded in favour of the admission of Argentina, how does he reconcile his statement with his remaining a member of the Cabinet?

Mr Ward - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follows: -

1.   Yes.

2.   The Labour party, unlike the Opposition parties, is based upon democratic principles which permit members of that organization to exercise the greatest possible freedom of expression. To relieve the apparent anxiety of the honorable member for Bendigo, I can assure him that my colleagues have never at any time questioned my position in the Cabinet, and I enjoy their complete confidence, and, finally, I haveno intention of resigning.

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