The Argus at KellyGang 21/10/1881

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(full text transcription)

The Minister of Education yesterday suspended James Wallace, the teacher at Yea, who is referred to in the report of the Police Commission as a Kelly sympathiser. The suspension will be pending the consideration by the Minister of the evidence given in this matter before the Police Commission.


Legislative Assembly


Mr KERFERD asked the Chief Secretary whether it was the intention of the Government to distribute among hon. members the progress report of the Police Commission recently submitted by that body? He would like also to see the commission, because it appeared to him that a most extraordinary course had been taken in recommending that officers should be disrated who had never been heard, (Hear, hear.) In his constituency, from which he had just returned, the very greatest amount of indignation was, felt, because some of the officers had been condemned unheard, no would ask the hon. gentleman to stay his hand with reference to the report until hon. members had expressed an opinion upon the subject.

Mr GRANT said that the report would be ready for distribution next day. The Government would not take any action with respect to the recommendations until hon. members had on opportunity of referring to them. (Hear, hear.)

Mr VALE asked if there would he any objection to circulating the evidence taken by the commission, because it would be necessary that hon. members should be in possession of it if they intended discussing the report?

Mr GRANT said that the evidence did not accompany the report, but it would be circulated when received from the Government printer.

Mr FINCHAM.-Mr Speaker, I have a matter which I wish to bring before the House, with regard to which I think every hon. member will consider I am adopting a right course. An hon. member has just grossly insulted me. I refer to the hon. member, Sir Charles MacMahon, member for West Melbourne , and I gave him an opportunity of again considering the terms which he addressed to me. In speaking about the Royal Commission ____

Sir JOHN O'SHANASSY.-This is a private matter.

Mr FINCHAM.-It is not. In speaking of the report of the Police Commission, of which I am a member, the hon. member said to me, "Fincham, how were you got at?" I took it as a joke at first, and said, "Surely"___

Mr MUNRO.-What has the House to do with it?

Mr FINCHAM.-I beg your pardon; the House has to do with it. I said, "Are you in earnest?" and he replied, “Yes¡ I am in earnest." I said, “If you repeat it again I shall certainly report it."

An Hon. Member.-It must be a joke.

Mr FINCHAM.-It is not a joke, and if an hon. member undertakes the responsibility, such as I did, he has no right to be insulted in the House, and such a matter should claim attention.

Sir CHARLES MACMAHON.-If hon. members think it necessary that 1 ought to afford any explanation, I am prepared to do so.

Mr FINCHAM.-If the hon. member will say that he didn't mean it, I will be satisfied.

Sir CHARLES MACMAHON.-l will not say that I did not mean it. It is not what I said. I said jocularly to the hon. member "How is it you have come to the conclusion you have in the Police Commission when you spoke to me in an entirely different tone?" I did not say that the hon. member had been "got at," whatever my opinions might be.

Mr FINCHAM (pointing to Mr Ramsay). -The hon. member heard it.

Sir CHARLES MACMAHON.-The hon. member will say nothing of the sort.

Mr FINCHAM.-I don't think you know what you did say.

Sir CHARLES MACMAHON. - I know what I did say, and what I meant, and what I intend to express when the debate comes on. I said that the hon. member's opinions were totally changed from the time when he spoke to me on the subject. I will repeat it, and, as I said, I intend to discuss the subject when it comes on in any way the hon. member chooses. But I will tell him this, that if he thinks he is going to take advantage of his position in this House to silence me, he is utterly mistaken. The hon. member is entirely wrong in drawing the attention of the Speaker to something which took place privately, so far as the persons are concerned, and I tell the hon. member that I don't care a rap whether he does or does not call the Speaker's attention to the matter.


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