Page 2364 - Week 08 - Tuesday, 28 June 2005

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Personal explanations

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra): Mr Speaker, I seek leave to make a personal explanation under standing order 46.

Leave granted.

MRS DUNNE: Mr Speaker, in question time today the Chief Minister said again, incorrectly, that I had always wanted to do away with people like Terry Snow and that I have objected to their being appointed to anything to do with the bushfire authority. He actually said I objected to him being appointed to something that I do not know he was ever appointed to. I would like to go back to Hansard on 5 March 2003, when I introduced the Bushfire Reconstruction Authority Bill. I said:

We are all well aware of the expertise in the bushfire task force. I have previously congratulated the government on assembling such skill and such talent in such a short time. The skill and talent extend not just to the task force members but to the staff that support them. I can think of no better person than Sandy Hollway to lead up this taskforce.

I went on to say that the task force is merely an advisory body and that what the Bushfire Reconstruction Authority proposed to do was to give real power, to empower Mr Hollway and his organisation, including Mr Snow and Mr De Castella, not just to advise but to act.

The next morning, 6 March, on 2CC, towards the conclusion of an interview about the Bushfire Reconstruction Authority Bill, I was asked where I would get the people to make up this authority. In response to the question, I said:

Well, I would take the existing taskforce with Sandy Hollway, Terry Snow and Rob De Castella and all the really good people and put them into the authority and I would take the very excellent staff that they have and turn that into the authority staff. I mean, all you have to do is take the very good structure that the government has already started to build and make it better.

At no stage, despite the perpetration of this untruth by the Chief Minister, have I ever said that Mr Snow or anyone associated with the Bushfire Recovery Taskforce was an unsuitable person to do that or that I wanted to replace them. I have had to rise in this place on a number of occasions and correct the record, and I will continue to do so.

MR SPEAKER: Order! You are debating the issue.

Mr Quinn: We know. We know.

MRS DUNNE: Well, don’t keep telling lies.

MR HARGREAVES: Mr Speaker, Mrs Dunne said, “Well, don’t keep telling lies” I ask you to ask her to withdraw that.

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