Effective repetition

13.8Certain recent cases have raised the issue of how much protection is afforded to repetition (whether in terms or by reference) outside the legislature to what had been said within its walls, short of full separate republication or repetition.1

In the UK case of Makudi v Treisman, the court held that there were occasions when it will be in the public interest for a Member to repeat or refer to statements outside Parliament. Lord Justice Laws suggested that Article IX of the Bill of Rights would extend to repetition of such statements when there was ‘1) a public interest in repetition of the Parliamentary utterance which the speaker ought reasonably to serve and 2) so close a nexus between the occasions of his speaking, in and then out of Parliament, that the prospect of his obligation to speak on the second occasion […] is reasonably foreseeable at the time of the first and his purpose in speaking on both occasions is the same or very closely related’ although this should not be taken to be a hard and fast rule.2


  1. 1. In 2004 the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council [2004] UKPC 36, [2005] 1 AC 115, [2005] 2 All ER 273 upheld the decision of the New Zealand Court of Appeal, in the case of Jennings v Buchanan [2003] 3 NZLR 145, to permit words spoken in Parliament to be used to establish the historical fact that they had been spoken, and its judgment (by a majority) that what amounted to repetition of a prior protected statement depended on the circumstances. In the instant case the phrase ‘I do not resile’ (from the statement in the House) was effectively repetition, and not a mere acknowledgment of the earlier privileged statement. See also Beitzel v Crabb [1992] 2 VR 121; Della Bosca v Arena [1999] NSWSC 1057 and Peters v Cushing [1999] NZAR 241; The Attorney-General v Leigh NZSC 11/2011 (s 3 of the New Zealand Parliamentary Privilege Act states ‘to abolish and prohibit evidence being offered or received, questions being asked, or statements, submissions, or comments made, concerning proceedings in Parliament, to inform or support “effective repetition” claims and liabilities in proceedings in a court or tribunal and exemplified by the decision in Buchanan v Jennings [2004] UKPC 36, [2005] 2 All ER 273 (PC);’ as among the purposes of the Act).
  2. 2. Makudi v Triesman [2014] ECWA Civ 179 at paras 25–26.