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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 2 Hansard (25 February) . . Page.. 748..


MS GALLAGHER (continuing):

and considered. And that is something that it appears the opposition are not prepared to allow to happen. I urge the opposition to just rise a little bit above the actual politics of this and allow those doctors' issues to be aired and dealt with.

MR SPEAKER: Supplementary, Mr Hanson?

MR HANSON: Minister, you have also said that there has been no substantiation of these claims for doctors, yet you profess that you have known of the 10-year war since at least 2005. Which is true—or are both true?

MS GALLAGHER: I missed the first bit of the question, but I think it is along the same theme. All of the comments I have made in relation to this matter over the past week are accurate from my point of view, from the information that I have available to me. As I said, the one thing that I hope comes out of all of this is that the obstetricians across the ACT work together and put aside some of the differences that they have brought to the system over a number of years. I do not think it is in anyone's interests in relation to the long-term needs of this community's health system. We need a fully functioning private obstetrics service and we need a fully functioning public obstetrics service. There is enough work for everybody; there is a role for everybody. We need to ensure that all of the people involved in the events of the last week have the opportunity to have the matters examined and reviewed and appropriate action taken.

MR HARGREAVES: A supplementary, Mr Speaker?

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mr Hargreaves.

MR HARGREAVES: Minister, how does the 10-year war involving obstetricians compare with the 10-year war in the Liberal Party over leadership where they have had five leaders over the last few years? I think it is one new leader every two years.

Mrs Dunne: Mr Speaker, on Mr Hargreaves's question: Mr Hargreaves is blatantly abusing the supplementary question system to deprive members of the opportunity to ask questions by asking questions which are clearly out of order. He has done it twice today. He did it yesterday. Mr Hanson raised the issue yesterday. I would like you to address it.

MR SPEAKER: There are a number of points on this matter. Yes, the question is out of order. I do not know that I need to state that. It is clear that members should not ask facetious or frivolous questions. I will keep an eye on that to make sure it does not happen.

The other observation to make is that, as I indicated when we moved to the new supplementary question system, I do have an approximate quota of questions in proportion to the major parties represented on the floor. If the Labor Party chooses to use up its questions in this way, they should not protest when they run out of opportunities later in question time to have a question.

Mr Hargreaves: I would be interested in seeing the actual delivery of the numbers against those quotas that you are talking about, because my count seems to show an imbalance.


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