Page 65 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 7 December 2004

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MR SPEAKER: If the word “outrageous” was used in the context of a court decision, I would ask Mr Stanhope to withdraw that. But I think Mr Stanhope is entitled to refer to matters upon which he has received advice.

MR STANHOPE: They are quite relevant. I have used the word “outrageous” in relation to the defamation and it certainly was—

Mr Smyth: Because there was no defamation.


Mr Smyth: Point of order, Mr Speaker. There was no defamation. The court found against Ms Szuty.

MR SPEAKER: Order! I cannot deliberate on what the court has or has not found. I do not think you have a point of order in that context, Mr Smyth.

Mrs Dunne: Mr Speaker, I would again ask the Chief Minister to withdraw the word “outrageous” in relation to defamation. I have already asked him to withdraw it and he has used this as an opportunity to repeat it.

MR SPEAKER: I said to the Chief Minister that he should withdraw the word if he said it in the context of the court’s decision.

MR STANHOPE: I will not mention the issue of what exactly it was that the court found in relation to Mr Smyth’s conduct. I will table the judgement after question time; it makes very interesting reading.

But I make the point—and I do not wish to digress—that as Attorney-General I am asked to deal with a full range of issues that affect the territory in the courts. One such matter at the moment is the extent of the costs that the territory will have to pay as a result—

Mrs Dunne: A point of order, Mr Speaker. I refer to paragraph (a) of standing order 118. I asked a question about who provided independent advice and how that was facilitated by the head of JACS, and that has not been answered in the 4½ minutes that the Chief Minister has taken.

MR SPEAKER: The Chief Minister has five minutes to answer the question and if he is prevented from doing so by continuous points of order along the same lines it is hard to see how he will ever get the chance to do so.

MR STANHOPE: Mr Speaker, the advice, amongst a range of advice which the government received and on which it ultimately acted, was received from respectively leading members of the Sydney and Melbourne bars, which is what happens constantly. I would have answered the question more quickly if you had not kept interrupting me.

Bushfires—coronial inquest

MR MULCAHY: Mr Speaker, my question is to the attorney. I refer to the

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