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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1997 Week 2 Hansard (27 February) . . Page.. 627..


MR MOORE (continuing):

But you being Speaker, and because of the way you look after members here, I am sure all other members would take the opportunity to say how much we enjoyed your speakership and all the nice things we could think of. I am just trying to think of one, if I can, Mr Speaker.

Before I sit down, I call on the Government to stop being embarrassed. Please, Chief Minister, stand up and say something about Mr De Domenico. Please use the opportunity. I do not know how else to embarrass you into making sure you do say something. Mr Osborne has asked question after question at question time, and I have backed him up, because it is just unfair.

Resignation of Member

MRS CARNELL (Chief Minister) (7.01): Mr Speaker, I would like to place on record my and my party's support and thanks to Tony De Domenico, who resigned as Deputy Chief Minister and from this Assembly last month to take up a position in the private sector. Mr De Domenico served this Assembly for almost five years. During that time he served variously as Deputy Leader of the Opposition, Deputy Chief Minister, and for a couple of weeks here and there as Acting Chief Minister. His departure from the Assembly certainly marks the end of a meaningful, if colourful, political career. It was built entirely on looking after the people of Canberra to the best of his ability, and I am sure that nobody would take that away from him. I am sure that Tony would not mind being called colourful, because no-one could accuse him of being a wilting flower when it came to the cut and thrust of debate, both inside and outside these four walls.

Mr De Domenico came to this Assembly from a background in business and extensive community involvement. He came to Australia in 1950. Many people may not know Tony's background. He is the only son of Egyptian parents. The De Domenicos fled political persecution in Egypt to emigrate to Australia. They arrived in Melbourne and they were penniless. It is worth noting that Tony's father, Renato, went to Fishermens Bend to build Holdens, while his mother, Irma, worked on a production line building television sets. Tony was educated at Marist Brothers College at Preston and later studied for a Bachelor of Arts degree at the Melbourne University, before being somewhat diverted to politics. In 1976 he stood for the seat of Reservoir, a Labor Party stronghold, and although he lost he improved the Liberal Party's vote. He then worked as a customs officer before becoming the adviser to the Victorian Minister for Immigration and Ethnic Affairs, Mr Walter Jona, in 1979. It was probably at that time that Tony really became wedded to politics.

He moved to Canberra in the 1980s to take up the position of regional manager of the Insurance Council of Australia, and in 1988 he began working as a lobbyist and public relations specialist for Royce Consolidated. In Canberra he became a very active member of both the community and the Liberal Party. Tony held many positions.


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