The Governor General of Australia, Sir John Kerr, and the Prime Minister, Mr. Malcolm Fraser,?
The Governor General of Australia, Sir John Kerr, and the Prime Minister, Mr. Malcolm Fraser, were targets for separate angry demonstrations in Sydney and Melbourne on Monday (23 August).
SYNOPSIS: Mr. Fraser was at Monash University in Melbourne to open an educational centre for handicapped children when the demonstration started. Several hundred students gathered outside the theatre to protest against last year's sacking of former Prime Minister, Mr. Gough Whitlam and his Labour Government. Students stormed the building, forcing Mr. Fraser to take refuge in an office.
Mr. Fraser was trapped for more than an hour by the students, who forced back police trying to help the Prime Minister leave the building. He finally escaped by skidding 50 metres down an embankment to a waiting police car while demonstrators gave chase.
The demonstration against Sir John Kerr happened at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, where the Governor General was opening an international welding conference. About three hundred people were involved in the demonstration, one of several Sir John has had to face since he sacked the Whitlam government last year.
Three youths were arrested during scuffles which broke out as Sir John was leaving the conference. Students hurled eggs and fruit and burned an effigy of Sir John during the demonstration. The demonstrations were the most violent against Sir John and Mr. Fraser since the general election last year.