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Thursday, 29 September 1904

Debate resumed from 28th September (vide page 5045), on motion by Mr. Watson -

That -the present Administration does not possess the confidence of this House.

Mr Reid - I am sorry to have to add to the list of honorable members who claim that they have been misrepresented, but in view of the statements made by the honorable member for Hume yesterday, I think that honorable members will see that I have some substantial reason for giving a personal explanation to this House. There are two matters to which I wish to refer, and I shall do so as briefly as possible. One is the statement of the honorable member as to the manner of keeping accounts in New South Wales while I was Premier of that State, and the other is the honorable member's imputation of bribery. I shall deal with the accounts first. I thought, after the correspondence which was put before honorable members, signed by every member of the Committee appointed by the honorable member for Hume, that we should hear no more of these imputations, but instead of that being so, the honorable member has repeated them.. He also made some reference to a visit of one of the three accountants appointed at my instigation to my private residence, as if some sinister underhand proceeding was involved in that occurrence. The fact is that I am not like the honorable member} I am a busy man. I am a man who has some private affairs to attend 'to when I am not in office. One of the leading accountants in Sydney - one of the three who were appointed in the way I am about to mention to the House - visited me under the! following circumstances: - When the honorable member for Hume appointed his Committee, I protested against the appointment of one of its three members on the ground that a few months before he had been a candidate for Parliament at the general elections of 1898 in opposition to me, and had accepted the views of the honorable member for Hume in regard to my financial administration as Treasurer of the State.

Sir William Lyne - I rise to order.

East night you held, Mr. Speaker, that I could not make a personal explanation about anything which had not been stated in regard to myself. If the right honorable gentleman is allowed 'to go into these details, and: practically makes another speech in connexion with this matter, I hope that I may be allowed to reply to him.

Mr. Wilks. - Gag

Sir William Lyne - There is no question of gagging. I wish only for fair play in connexion with this matter.

Mr Reid - A nice slander it was that the honorable member uttered.

Sir William Lyne - Whatis fair for one is fair for another. I told the truth, and I wish to know now whether the right honorable gentleman can go into full details in regard to all the matters referred to the other day, and dealt with by me yesterday, without my having an opportunity to reply to him?

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