Following certain allegations which included both a claim of criminal behaviour and a claim under civil law being made against me by Mr James Ashby, I issued a Statement both strenuously denying the allegations and undertaking to step aside while the criminal allegation was resolved. The criminal allegation has been shown to be a fabrication and there is is no longer any reason to step aside. Since having the honour of being elected as Speaker of the House of Representatives I have introduced reforms which have improved the esteem and functioning of the Parliament. More though remains to be done and I am looking forward to continuing this work. I believe however it is imperative that the dignity of the Parliament be upheld and for this reason when the House resumes its sitting on 8 May, I will make a short statement to the House and then invite the Deputy Speaker to take the chair as Deputy Speaker. This will avoid what could be a controversial debate on the floor of the Parliament, which would not assist the standing of the Parliament. I reject the allegations which have been made against me and look forward to resuming my role in the Chamber at a future time.

Canberra Sunday 29 April 2012

Parliament House Canberra ACT 2600

Telephone (02) 6277 4000

Facsimile (02) 6277 2050

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