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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 02 Hansard (Wednesday, 10 May 1995) . . Page.. 369 ..


Ms Follett: He does not have much choice, does he?

MR SPEAKER: No. We agreed on that.

Ms Follett: That shows gross discourtesy by the other members.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Mr Berry has the floor, and I would like him to be heard in silence.

MR BERRY: I am sorry that I drew attention to Mr Moore's failings. I knew that it would upset him, and I will probably pay for that.

Mr Moore: Remember what happened last time you misled the Assembly.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Mr Berry, please continue.

MR BERRY: Mr Pot is at work.

Mr Speaker, what we are dealing with here is an issue about ministerial inaction. It seems, on the face of it, that the motion will not pass. I am content with that, because what it is saying is that the majority of the members in this Assembly are unconcerned that the Minister did not act, in the first place, at a political level - - -

Mr Humphries: Absolute nonsense! What a crock of poo!

MR BERRY: He did not. When his attention was drawn to the smoke outside his window, when it became so thick that it was embarrassing, and when the matter was drawn to the attention of the media, the Minister was very quick to say, “I have written to the Labor Minister in New South Wales. It will be her fault from now on”. But, of course, the facts of the matter cannot be changed. Mr Humphries did not do anything at a political level until the 27th, almost a month later, and he did so in response to a blanket of smoke across the Territory and the citizens of the Territory being affected by that blanket of smoke.

This motion would not have arisen if there had not been that attempt to mislead the community. It seems to me that it would have been quite sensible for Mr Humphries to explain why he had not written until the smoke had descended again, but he did not. So, I think we are entitled to express regret about that lack of action, and I am disappointed that the motion will fail.

MR SPEAKER: Order! The member's time has expired.

MR MOORE: Mr Speaker, I seek leave to make an explanation under standing order 46.

MR SPEAKER: Please proceed.


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