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Wednesday, 9 July 1930

Senator PLAIN (Victoria) .- As the Prime Minister (Mr. Scullin) has seen fit to put his name to the agreement under the bill, I am quite certain that he is fully satisfied with the information that has been supplied to him in respect of the Wiluna mine. He was careful to enter into the agreement subject to its ratification by Parliament. I appeal to the Leader of the Government (Senator Daly) to postpone this bill until au investigation has been made by a metallurgist or other officer of the Commonwealth, and his report submitted to thi* Parliament. That, I feel sure, would satisfy every honorable senator. I realize what an enterprise of this kind means to Western Australia, particularly if it should prove successful.

Senator Guthrie - There are many mines in Victoria that are equally entitled to assistance.

Senator PLAIN - That may be so. In this case, a huge amount of money has already been expended, and there appears to be a possibility of success. I feel sure that if a favorable report were submitted by ti Commonwealth officer to this Parliament, there would be no difficulty in passing the measure.

Senator Daly - The speeches of honorable senators opposite indicate that no report, however favorable, would influence their objections to the bill.

Senator PLAIN - Unless the Government is prepared to institute an independent inquiry, I shall not support the bill.

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