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The approach of His Excellency the Governor-General, the Right Honourable Sir Zelman Cowen, A.K., G.C.M.G., G.C.V.O., K.St.J., Q.C., was announced by the Usher of the Black Rod.

His Excellency, having been conducted to the Chair, informed Senators that he was present to administer to Senators elected to serve in the Senate from 1 July 1981 the oath or affirmation of allegiance, as required by section 42 of the Constitution.