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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2023 Week 02 Hansard (Wednesday, 22 March 2023) . . Page.. 495 ..

Wednesday, 22 March 2023

MR ACTING SPEAKER (Mr Parton) (10.00): Members:

Dhawura nguna, dhawura Ngunnawal.

Yanggu ngalawiri dhunimanyin Ngunnawalwari dhawurawari.

Nginggada Dindi wanggiralidjinyin.

The words I have just spoken are in the language of the traditional custodians and they translate to:

This is Ngunnawal Country.

Today we are all meeting on Ngunnawal country.

We always pay respect to Elders, female and male.

Members, I ask you to stand in silence and pray or reflect on our responsibilities to the people of the Australian Capital Territory.

Legislative Assembly—point of order

Ruling by Acting Speaker

MR ACTING SPEAKER: Members, I wish to make a statement concerning a point of order raised by Ms Stephen-Smith yesterday about remarks made by Ms Castley during a motion moved by Ms Castley. The motion canvassed, amongst other things, a call for action by the government to establish a permanent gynaecology oncology unit in the forthcoming budget.

Ms Stephen-Smith raised a point of order about a quote that Ms Castley gave in relation to the issues discussed in the motion and claimed that Ms Castley was misleading the community. The Assistant Speaker indicated that he would check the Hansard and would make a ruling at a future date, if required.

I refer members to page 334 of the second edition of the Companion to the Standing Orders of the Legislative Assembly for the Australian Capital Territory, where it states that:

The fact that members are criticised in the Assembly does not necessarily mean that standing orders have been breached. For example, the chair has declined to rule that words complained of were offensive or disorderly, stating that he was reluctant to get involved in nuances and emphases in what, on the facts available, appear to be essentially a political matter.

Later at paragraph 11.93 on the same page of the Companion it is stated that:

Claims that members have misled the community have not been ruled out
of order.

Having considered the matter, I do not believe that the comments made were an imputation of an improper motive of Ms Stephen-Smith, and so I do not uphold the point of order.

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