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Wednesday, 12 September 1984
Page: 1120

Mr STEELE HALL —I draw the attention of the Treasurer to a document purporting to be a copy of the text of a telex message in the possession of the Stewart Royal Commission of Inquiry into Drug Trafficking. It reads:

The following is the text of a telex sent by F J Nugan to Les Collings on 250878:For Les CollingsRe your telex 235

Advise following Federal Labor politician would accept offer the Hon. Paul J. Keating, MHR.

The telex then goes on to give brief details of the Minister's career and it is signed FJN. Mr Speaker, with the permission of the House I would like to table directly the text referring to the telex. I ask the Treasurer: Is he the person referred to in the telex? Can he advise the House whether it is a correct reference to his activities? I seek leave to table a copy of the text of the telex.

Mr SPEAKER —Is leave granted?

Mr KEATING —Mr Speaker, I have never heard of such a matter, to be honest. I will have a look at the telex. It does not seem to make much sense.

Mr Young —Read it out.

Mr KEATING —I will read it out. Apart from all the telex gobbledegook, when we get down to the issue we see that it states:

Keating is shadow Minister for Minerals and Energy. In Whitlam Government was Minister for the 'Northern Australia' which at that time was not a State.

Was also youngest Minister in Whitlam Government.

This is probably a reasonable description of me, but I--

Mr Tuckey —Did you accept the offer?

Mr KEATING —I do not know what offer the honourable gentleman is referring to. The telex states:

Advise following federal Labor politician would accept offer.

I know nothing about this, Mr Speaker.

Mr SPEAKER —Is leave granted for the document to be tabled?

Mr KEATING —I am quite happy for the document to be tabled.

Leave granted.

Mr KEATING —Mr Speaker, I might add, for what it is worth, that I have never ever met any member of the Nugan Hand Bank.