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Thursday, 14 October 1971
Page: 2353

Mr CHARLES JONES (Newcastle) - I thank the House. The Opposition is concerned that reports of this nature are being tabled in the Parliament and no opportunity is being given to debate them. I welcome the statement by the Minister for National Development (Mr Swartz) that he is prepared at some time in the future to make a statement on the matter. I ask that that statement be tabled as early as is convenient so that honourable members, if they desire, can debate the relevant findings of the inquiry. Courts of marine inquiry have been set up to investigate tragedies such as the 'Noongah' and the 'Sedco Helen' but there has never been any opportunity for honourable members to discuss these questions. 1 hope that in the near future the Prime Minister (Mr McMahon) and the Government will give serious consideration to making statements when reports of this nature are tabled so that honourable members can debate the merits of the reports. Too often the inquiries are held and then the reports are thrown into the archives and honourable members are not given the opportunity to debate them.

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