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Wednesday, 20 March 1957

Mr HASLUCK (Curtin) (Minister for Territories) . - I move -

That the bill be now read a second time.

The bill is one of those measures which are introduced simply because the legal advisers of the Government state that it is necessary in order to give effect to the intentions which this Parliament has expressed in existing legislation. The Removal of Prisoners (Territories) Act 1923-1950 provides power by which prisoners other than aboriginal natives can be removed from Commonwealth Territories to serve their sentences in State prisons. The act provides that the Administrator of the Territory may recommend to the Governor-General that a prisoner be removed to a State prison and the Governor-General may, with the concurrence of the Government of the particular State, order a prisoner to be removed to that State. In some territories there is no officer with the title of Administrator, and our legal advisers say that no person other than a person bearing that title may make the recommendation that the act requires the Administrator to make. The purpose of the bill is simply to provide that where there is no officer known as Administrator in a territory, the Governor-General may, by order published in the Commonwealth of Australia " Gazette ", authorize the occupant of a specific office, or a particular person, to exercise and perform, in relation to that territory, the powers and functions of an administrator under the act. It can be seen, therefore, that the purpose of the bill is simply to enable us to give effect to an existing practice in those territories that have no officer bearing the title of Administrator. I commend the bill to the House.

Debate (on motion by Mr. Edmonds) adjourned.

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