Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 15 Hansard (Tuesday, 13 December 2005) . . Page.. 4768 ..
committee, not as two members and a person appearing to be quite disengaged, as had been the previous process.
I agree with Mr Seselja. I thought we were cooperatively working together and being productive in our last discussion on this report, but it appears that Mr Seselja was playing some sort of game, rather like his federal leader did with voluntary student unionism last week. Mr Seselja lulled us into a false sense of security, leading us to understand that he was willing to work with other members rather than against them.
I regret the position I did take that he has just referred to, as I now see that, just as Mr Howard managed to show himself up to be mean and sneaky over the VSU, Mr Seselja has once again let the committee down with his dissenting report and remarks.
We see lists of complaints and misconceptions about reality in Mr Seselja’s dissenting report, although I believe—and I am probably being kind when I indicate that Mr Seselja has misunderstood—he deliberately chooses not to understand so that he can reflect negatively on the annual and financial reports for 2004-05 in some way in order to reflect negatively on the minister and on this government. Of course, this is what we have come to expect of Mr Seselja as he is desperately trying to show that he is a real Liberal, as capable as his colleagues in his ability to complain and undermine, as capable as his colleagues to take advantage of the goodwill extended to him by other members of the committee, which he admits existed.
I will not waste the Assembly’s time by going through his shopping list of complaints, although members can, if they have a mind to, read for themselves the annual reports for 2004-05, the committee’s report and Mr Seselja’s dissenting report. Then, armed with the facts, they will be able to make their own judgments on Mr Seselja’s appalling behaviour. I look forward to the committee’s deliberations in 2006. I trust that Mr Seselja will reflect upon his behaviour and decide to use New Year’s Day to resolve to work cooperatively with the committee in 2006.
Mr Seselja: Mr Speaker, I seek leave to respond to Ms Porter.
Leave not granted.
DR FOSKEY (Molonglo) (5.05): I take this opportunity to respond to the report. First up, I would say that it is very concerning that, in the last two sitting weeks, including this one, the tabling of reports by the planning and environment committee has ended up being opportunities for one member and then the other two members to engage in what I can only see as a slanging match. It is a great pity.
The planning and environment committee, like all our committees, is an opportunity for members to work together. There will be disagreements. They can be expressed in dissenting reports. Personally, I would rather not come in here and hear from each of the two groups. Let us face it: we have a Labor majority, which must be quite disempowering for the third member of the committee. Let us get past that and let us hope that, in the next report that is presented, we will not have qualifications about how well the members worked with each other.