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SURPRISE BILL

ELECTORAL CHANGES '

VIGOROUS OPPOSITION

SESSION'S PROSPECTS (S R.) WELLINGTON, Sunda, The unexpected'appearance of th Electoral Amendment Bill with \ abolition of the country quota and alteration in the method of determining electorates last week disturbed the placid and almost leisurely atmosphere which has surrounded the House of Ken resent a lives for some weeks. Feeling ran high as challenges and counter. challenges were flung across the floor of the House. Observers at Parliament had e* pect.ed the week to be a tedious filling in period. I hey were encouraged in thil Mief l.v statement in the HoS.T its acting-Leader, Mr Nash, at the end of the previous week, that lie did not think any important legislation Va » coming down. 'I he Prime Minister Mr * Fraser. was still confined to his home and the Leader ot the Opposition. il r Holland, had been granted leave ' o f absence owing to the death of his mother. A Tense Atmosphere

Whispers circulated in the lobbies on Thursday afternoon and there was a tense atmosphere in tlie'chamber when the House resumed on Thursday night but when the Speaker; the Hon. F. W Schramm, rose to read th e title of the bill Opposition members and the gal[cries showed open surprise. In his short explanation of the bill Mr Nash said enough to confirm the fears of the Opposition that the longawaited abolition of the country quota was at last before the Mouse. It is no secret that the Opposition was caught completely unprepared for this biU, but members reacted quickly unci opened the most vigorous and effective debate so far this session. Considering thev were speaking without preparation the first three Opposition members, Messrs W. J.. Poison (Stratford), K. J. Holy, oake (I'ahiatiia) and F. W. Doidge (Tauranga) gave excellent speeches. Opposition Seizes Opportunity

-Tlio debate was most unusual as it was actually on a technical recommendation that the bill should he introduced" This is the first opportunity within Parliamentary procedure in "which a measure inny he debated and the Opposition seized it. It is doubtful if the Government expected that the debate would continue as long as it did and Mr Nash made an attempt to hare the bill formally introduced just before the House adjourned, but without success. When the House rose it was still debating the introduction of the bill, so th,.t copies are still not available as technically they are not printed until the bill has been read a first time. The measure is one of the most contentious on the Government's legislative programme. The adjournment should enable the Opposition to prepare further ammunition and the resumption of the debate should provide more fireworks. Slow Pace Maintained The Electoral Amendment Bill completely overshadowed the remainder of the week's business. The Social Security Amendment Bill is still dragging on and has not yet been rear 1 a second time. Both sides have had ample opportunity of stating their case. All through the previous week the Opposition complained that they could not discuss the measure intelligently until they knew the cost of the new benefits and how that cost was to be met. The promised explanation by .Mr Nash cleared up the first point, but the House is still none the wiser on the second Mr R. 31. Algie (Opposition—Remuera), describing the explanation as "a masterpiece of obscurity." The House has decided that the nest two weeks will be "short weeks," of only three sitting days each. This will make three short weeks running and leaves only four sitting days in this month. At this pace the House will be sitting for some time yet and all possibility of the session being completed before the Labour conference on Novera. her 12 has vanished. However, as soon as the next two short weeks are over there is every prospect of a marked acceleration in the pace of proceedings. Measures Still to Come With several long sittings in prospect', apart from the Bank Bill and the Airways Bill, both of which will receive a rough passage, the legislative programme is still heavy. There is a Land and Income Tax Amendment Bill,- a Superannuation Bill, a Shops and Offices Bill, a Factories Bill and other smaller matters. Two other measures which were not hinted at in the Speech from the Throne, but which must be introduced this session are a Woo! Bill to authorise the expenditure of money on the new wool'organisation and a measure dealing with the Bretton Woods monetary agreement. Legislative decision must be made on this agreement before the session is completed. It is now predicted in the lobbies that the House will be sitting to about the end of November. DEFAULTERS' NAMES PUBLICATION NOT FAVOURED (0.C.) WHANGAREI, Sunday The question of the publication in the R.S.A. Review of the names of military defaulters who had applied for release from detention was discussed at a meeting of the Wlmngarei Returned Services Association last night. It was decided to inform the Dominion executive that the Whangnrei R.S.A. considered the names should not be published, as no good purpose would ho served.

OBITUARY MR HAUNUI TAWHIAQ (0.C.) HUXTLY, Sunday < The death has occurred of Mr Haunui Tawhiao, of Wan hi Pa, Huntlv West, aged 63. Mr Tawhiao was corn at Kawhia and came to Waahi Pa about 53 years ago. _ He was a son of the late King Tawhiao and a grand-uncle ot King Koroki. He is survived by bis wife, three sons and one daughter. HAWKE'S BAY SHOW (P.A.) ' HASTINGS, Saturday The estimated attendance of 31,000 people at the tlawke's Bay Agricultural and Pastoral Society's V ictory Sho\V this week set a record for Peoples Day. Although the gate figures are still incomplete today, the total of £L9" in hand constituted a record for the society and was more than £3OO in excess of the takings at last year's spring show. Subscriptions were placed conservatively at £2650 this year, Compared with £2164 last year. • This year's takings represent a substantial increase on those for 1929, when tho previous records were established, Even when the Royal Show was held at Tomoana for the first time and extended over three days the ,E a *® takings failed to reach those established by this year's fixture. PERSONAL ITEMS The Hon. H. G. R. Mason. Minister of Justice, who has been visiting Auck* land, left for Wellington yesterday morning. Rear-Admiral Paul Hendren. U.S.No Commander, South Pacific Force and Area, is visiting Auckland and is at tnß Northern Club. He will leave on his return to Noumea, today. Mr A. E. Rudder, a representative of British Overseas Airways and a direcW of Tasman Empire Airways and Q 3 ' 1 . Empire Airways, arrived by flying-" 011 , on Saturday to attend a meeting 0 the board of directors of Tasman Em PL Airways. He was accompanied bv • A. J. S. Scott, an officer of the Commonwealth Civil Aviation Departmen

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/NZH19451022.2.66

Bibliographic details

SURPRISE BILL, New Zealand Herald, Volume 82, Issue 25339, 22 October 1945

Word Count
1,149

SURPRISE BILL New Zealand Herald, Volume 82, Issue 25339, 22 October 1945

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