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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 10 Hansard (26 November) . . Page.. 3087 ..

Mr Moore: Mr Speaker, on a point of order: I said they were the bad Berry days. He is now trying to prove that they were not. That is the fundamental of debating.

MR BERRY: There is nothing before the house, Mr Speaker, to put forward.

MR SPEAKER: Order! I do not uphold the point of order. Mr Berry is enumerating a number of measures that he introduced during his time as Minister for Health. He is allowed to do that. If he is subsequently proven wrong, I suppose matters will be taken up. Please proceed.

MR BERRY: Those are among the issues I have just thought of and scribbled down on a piece of paper. The infamous deed with the VMOs was broken, which allowed for better VMO agreements. You may recall that. I mentioned the clinical medical school. The Health Promotion Fund was established by me. I increased the public methadone program from 80-odd places to 300-plus, as I recall it.

Mr Moore: On a point of order, Mr Speaker: If you allow Mr Berry to proceed and use this standing order in this way, all that will happen is that any time a comment is made in question time about Labor's performance, those opposite will get up and play this sort of game. Any member can play it. It is a debating game. It is quite clear that Mr Berry is misusing standing orders. You ought not set a precedent like this, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Members can explain matters of a personal nature. I am listening to Mr Berry very carefully. He is not debating the issues. He is listing a series of achievements.

MR BERRY: Indeed, Mr Speaker. One achievement that I am not proud of was when, at the peak of the doctors dispute, or at the end of it, there were something like 4,400 people waiting for surgery within the hospital system. I did not think those numbers were too flash. When I look at the numbers now - - -

MR SPEAKER: Order! You are now debating. Sit down, please.

MR BERRY: I will go to the other issue he raised about the psychiatric unit then.

MR SPEAKER: Very well.

MR BERRY: Mr Speaker, all I can claim regarding the psychiatric unit is the plaque on the front. This is not a reflection on Mr Humphries, because I think Mr Humphries was doing what everybody else would have done. I cannot take credit for it and I would not criticise him for it. The only thing I can take credit for is the plaque at the front. I think it was shortly after there was a change in leadership that I had the job of opening a building I knew nothing about. The plaque is there and at the time I thought - - -

Mr Moore: I was actually trying to put it in for timing, but the plaque is there.


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