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Tuesday, 17 September 1974
Page: 1111

Senator GREENWOOD -Mr President,I wish to ask a supplementary question.

Senator Poyser - Mr President,I raise a point of order relating to the abuse by the Opposition in relation to the asking of supplementary questions, particularly on the basis that on many occasions Opposition senators claim that they want to ask a supplementary question because their original question has not been answered. There are no provisions in the Standing Orders for supplementary questions. I believe that the precedents which have been established in regard to the asking of such questions are now being abused, Mr President, and I ask for your ruling on this matter.

The PRESIDENT - The previous incumbent of this chair allowed supplementary questions. I understand that he did so in accordance with the practice in the House of Lords and the House of Commons where questions on notice are subject to supplementary questions for clarification. I would like to give more thought to this matter now that it has been raised. I ask Senator Greenwood to confine his next question to clarification of the answer given by the Minister.

Senator GREENWOOD -The question I ask essentially is the question I asked earlier. Was the Minister aware of what took place at the interview between Ermolenko and the officials of the Department of Labor and Immigration? Will he table the record of interview?

Senator WILLESEE -I have answered that question already and I am not going to table the record of interview. As I have said several times, I am not going to have a situation where interdepartmental reports are going to be tabled every time the Opposition wants them tabled. Such a situation would be ridiculous.

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