Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 7 Hansard (6 June) . . Page.. 2000 ..
MR HUMPHRIES (continuing):
about asking questions. That is our job in this place. The attention we can give to this in the estimates committee is not adequate for this purpose. It involves scrutiny which entails discussion with the community as a whole. It is a longer issue which entails appropriate involvement by community organisations that wish to have their views on this matter heard.
For the government to refuse this motion today is nothing less than an unwillingness to be subject to scrutiny, an unwillingness to be accountable for their decisions. That is utterly shameful.
MRS DUNNE (11.26): I rise in support of this motion and in support of my colleagues. I would like to echo what the Leader of the Opposition said. The minister's first response was to go after the man. If the minister had any knowledge about the forms of the house, he would understand that the Public Accounts Committee in this parliament and in any other parliament in Australia is a more senior committee to the mere Planning and Environment Committee, and therefore the protocols and forms of the house would require the set up proposed in the motion if we are to have a broad-based inquiry into planning implications and the economic implications of this policy.
Again today, as we have seen on many occasions with this government, particularly with this Planning Minister, the government has been sitting on its hands. We saw it with the GDE and now with this proposal for government development of land. The government demands to implement its policy, but we know that before they made their election commitment to that policy they did no work on it. They did not know how they were going to do it, and six months into their term they still do not know how they are going to do it.
What we see here today is this Langmore-ite minister trotting out his principles, as opposed to our rhetoric, and his usual-
Mr Corbell: I take a point of order, Mr Speaker. Mrs Dunne has accused me of being a Langmore-ite minister. I do not know about Mrs Dunne, but I have the highest respect for John Langmore, former federal member for Fraser and now an officer with the International Labour Organisation. But Mrs Dunne is using the term as a form of abuse. She is using it in a derisory and derogatory way. I am quite happy to be associated with John Langmore, Mr Speaker, but I think the way that Mrs Dunne uses the comment is both derisory and disrespectful. It is certainly outside the standing orders, and she should apologise and withdraw the comment.
MR SPEAKER: Mrs Dunne, it does not add much to the class of this place for members to try to belt up, metaphorically, former members of parliament who have significant positions in other places. I encourage you to desist on that score.
Mr Humphries: Mr Speaker, on that ruling, could I ask-
MR SPEAKER: I have not made a ruling. I have just asked Mrs Dunne to have a bit of sense about the issue.