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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 5 Hansard (6 May) . . Page.. 1500 ..

MR MOORE (continuing):

I am informed that the VMO - in fact, I have a copy of the letter - has been written to this afternoon, Thursday, 6 May, and that he has been informed that his contract has been suspended for misconduct, in accordance with the terms of his contract. The chief executive has advised me that all other patients listed as being under the care of the visiting medical officer will be transferred to the care of the staff specialist and/or other visiting medical officers in the specialty.

MR RUGENDYKE: Mr Speaker, I have a supplementary question. Minister, on the surface, this action of surgery without consent would appear to be an assault. Has the matter been referred to the police for investigation?

MR MOORE: On the matter of assault, Mr Speaker, it is inappropriate for me to express any form of legal opinion. The chief executive will be handling the matter according to legal advice. If the legal advice to the chief executive officer does warrant that approach, then that will be the actual date. I have discussed the matter of the calling of the police with the chief executive officer and his response to me was in that form. So, that matter is yet to be followed through. An investigation by the police, of course, is still not a matter of guilt or innocence, but I think it is something that may well be followed up.

Bruce Stadium

MR STANHOPE: My question is to the Chief Minister. Has the Chief Minister received any advice that subcontractors working on the Bruce Stadium redevelopment have been told by lead contractors that they cannot be paid because the Government has not met payments due in the past month? If so, can the Chief Minister confirm that the contractors on the Bruce project have not been paid by the Government?

MS CARNELL: I will have to take that question on notice. I really have very little to do with the payment of subcontractors on the Bruce Stadium site, but I am also very interested, Mr Speaker, that in the second question time after the budget we have run out of questions on the budget.

MR STANHOPE: We have not run out of questions, Mr Speaker. Just following on from the Chief Minister's answer, I thank her for taking the question on notice, but will the Chief Minister take steps as soon as possible to ensure that contractors are paid what they are owed immediately and to ensure that they are paid on time during the remainder of the project?

MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, I think it is very important for subcontractors or, for that matter, anybody else who is owed money by the Government to be paid in a timely fashion, and I certainly will take that on board.

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