Parliamentary record : Part I debates (02 October 1990)
Debates for 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990
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Northern Territory Legislative Assembly
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
DEBATES - Tuesday 2 October 1990 like the opportunity to debate them at some length. For his benefit, those 4 issues are: removals to the north side, and the ongoing negotiations on the part of the businesses operating on the Darwin field; the question of the reduction in the number of flight service officers, and the implications that that has for many people who have given sterl ing service as fl ight service officers in the Territory; the question of the effect of the closure of flight service units at Tennant Creek, Katherine and, I believe, at Gove; and the question of air space management., I suggest that it is incumbent on the minister to initiate some thoroughgoing debate on each of those issues. Fortunately, there is every good chance that we will not have to put up with him for too much longer and that we will be able to deal with these matters ourselves. Mr TUXWORTH (Barkly): MY. Speaker, I will be brief. I would like to. address my remarks tonight to the Attorney-General. They follow on from the question I asked him this morning, which related to 2 documents tabled in the parliament by the minister during his ,personal explanation. The relevant documents relate to an indemnity against prosecution for the prostitute known as Rhonda. One of the documents, the fi rst to wh i ch I wi 11 refer, was signed by Commander Baker on 16 February and it is of importance. I would ask the Attorney-General whether, at some time tomorrow, he could confirm whether it was necessary for that document to have the approval of an assistant commissioner or a commissioner before it was activated and, if it was necessary, whether that approval was received. In relation to the second document, I would like to ask the Attorney-General again to address a matter which I will raise in question time tomorrow. It concerns the legal ability of the Senior Crown Prosecutor to sign an i ndemn ity. In the case of the fi rst indemnity, wh i ch I have mentioned, signed by Commander Baker, he had the power under section 76 to sign such a document. Under certain acts, the Attorney-General has the power to sign indemnities. As the Attorney-General said this morning, indemnities are not given lightly. The question I ask him again is: under what section of what act does the Senior Crown Prosecutor have the power to sign an i ndemn i ty, and do other peop 1 e bes i des the Sen i or Crown Prosecutor have the capacity to sign indemnities under certain circumstance~? The Attorney-General might believe that this particular matter is small beer or i rre 1 evant but, at the moment, it is important in the scheme of things. I would be grateful if he could provide that information to the House at some time tomorrow. ' Mr MANZI E (Attorney-General): Mr Speaker, in respondi ng to those matters, I would refer the member for Barkly to the Court of Appeal before the Pri vy Council in the case of MacDonald v Regi na. The case related to immunity from prosecution, where a finding was found by the Court of Appeal. The matter being considered was as follows: Where an undertaking is given to an accomplice to direct the stay of any future proceedings against him, it is immaterial whether such an undertaking is in law strictly binding upon the Crown. Further, where immunity from prosecution is offered to an accomplice by a law officer of the Crown, the undertaking should, as a matter of routine, be shown to the accompli ce before a deposition is taken from him. 10 722
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