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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 02 Hansard (Thursday, 11 February 2021) . . Page.. 520 ..


There were many difficult decisions that were taken over the years—perhaps none more so than decisions regarding leadership. But there was also the move from Ginninderra to Yerrabi in 2016. To lose 70 per cent of the electorate that you had worked on for over eight years was tough. However, it was the right decision. I am grateful to the Yerrabi electors for their support.

To all my colleagues on both sides, current and former, thank you for your friendship and support. To the wonderful Liberal staff who have served with dedication, distinction, commitment, loyalty and friendship, I thank you all very much.

I am a proud Liberal. To be a Liberal in this city is tough. Based on what you hear and see in the media, from activists or from many institutions, it would surprise many that there are still around 100,000 people that vote Liberal in this city. More than one in three households still vote Liberal. That is a significant number. They are swimming against the tide. It can take courage to be a Liberal in Canberra. I take my hat off to all those people that stick to their convictions.

I particularly want to thank my wife, Yasmin, for the extraordinary patience and love that she has shown me. I have been very blessed to be supported by her along this journey. I also look forward to recalling these days with my beautiful kids, Angus and Annabel, who really have no idea what I do. When they are asked what my job is, apparently they say it is either “to stand outside Casey shops” or “to cook barbecues”. I hope I did both with distinction.

I am also grateful to my parents-in-law, Gerry and Karen; my parents, Bruce and Barbara; and my brothers, Phil and James. Mum and Dad, who are here with us today, ride the wave of politics pretty hard. I am sure that they will be very relieved to not have to do any more letterboxing.

My request and advice to you all is to not take for granted the support that you receive from your family.

In my first speech I made mention of the importance of faith. Twelve years on, I am more confident and more vigilant about the importance of protecting and welcoming the input of people of faith into our public discussions.

I am proud of the constituent issues that I worked towards. I am proud of the policies I put forward, including our comprehensive planning policy and the rapid bus plan in 2016, which was largely adopted by the government. I am proud of the scrutiny and research I applied, including uncovering the land deals and numerous pieces of legislation to improve transparency. I am proud of the groups that we championed, particularly the small business, faith and multicultural communities. I would particularly like to thank the Indian, Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Filipino, Chinese and African communities for the warmth and generosity they have shown me. I am also proud of some of the mundane day-to-day things, some of the technical things—like our question time database, the FOIs, the questions, the correspondence and all the other things.


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