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Wednesday, 12 April 1972
Page: 1488

Mr ARMITAGE (Chifley) - Mr Speaker,I should like to speak in support of this motion. I point out that the petition which was read was not the petition I presented although it is in similar terms.

Mr Scholes - The petition the Prime Minister read was a different petition.

Mr ARMITAGE - Yes, it was a different petition.


Mr ARMITAGE - However, the reason I have moved this motion is that I believe-

Mr SPEAKER -Order! The honourable member has already spoken in relation to this matter. He did so when he moved the motion.

Mr Whitlam - And nobody is opposing it.

Mr SPEAKER - Nobody is opposing the motion.

Mr ARMITAGE - But the question now is that the petition be printed.

Mr SPEAKER - Yes, the honourable member has a point. There is a motion before the Chair that this petition be printed, but I just point out those circumstances to the honourable member.

Mr ARMITAGE - My reason for moving this motion is that I believe very firmly, as do, I think, a great many other people in this country today -

Mr SPEAKER -Order! I remind the honourable member that the subject matter of the petition shall not be debated. The honourable member may inform the House only in relation to the matter on which he has previously informed the House, namely, the reasons for the petition being printed. He may not debate the subject matter.

Mr ARMITAGE - The reason I am moving that this petition be printed is that I believe a situation has arisen of which everybody should be aware -

Mr SPEAKER -Order! I think the Chair has been fairly tolerant with the honourable member. If he persists along these lines I will ask him to resume his seat.

Mr ARMITAGE - But I have not given you my reason, Mr Speaker.

Mr SPEAKER -The honourable member for Chifley has already informed the House of the reasons he wanted the petition to be printed. The House decided that it did not want to divide on the matter and agreed to the reading. 1 will restrict the honourable member for Chifley to stating the reasons why he wants this petition printed. He shall not discuss the subject matter of the petition.

Mr ARMITAGE - So far, I have not discussed the subject matter and I do not intend to do so now. When this matter was first raised earlier a number of honourable members, particularly on the Government side, were absent from the House and I think it is important that they also should know the reasons why this petition has been presented and is to be printed. As I stated earlier, the reason it is to be printed is that a situation has arisen which I believe must be resolved and this can be done only by the Cabinet -

Mr SPEAKER -Order! I have warned the honourable gentleman sufficiently. He will now resume his seat.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

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