Page 113 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 14 February 2012

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question time, MPI and now executive business. Those opposite will need to seek leave if they wish to bring the censure back on, I am advised. The government’s intention is to proceed with executive business.

Mr Smyth: I will seek leave to call back on the censure. The normal practice of this place and most parliaments—and Mr Corbell should be well aware of this as manager of government business—is that motions like censures are normally dealt with in their entirety and not stalled in this ridiculous way.

MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: I am advised that we need to suspend standing orders in order to be able to do that.

Standing and temporary orders—suspension

MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (5.31) I move:

That so much of the standing and temporary orders be suspended as would prevent the order of the day relating to the proposed censure of the Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister being called on forthwith.

Madam Deputy Speaker, it is very important that, when a matter such as a censure is hanging over the head of a member, it be dealt with expeditiously. That has always been the tradition of this place and has been since the Assembly was set up. I find it quite extraordinary that we would just simply ignore the censure that is hanging over the heads of the Chief Minister and the Deputy Chief Minister for misleading the community in relation to the proposed government office building.

Normally there would not have been any hesitation in bringing this back on. I think it is very important that we deal with it now. I assume the Chief Minister wants to come down and defend herself. Mr Barr has had that opportunity, and the Chief Minister should be afforded that courtesy as well. I am actually quite surprised the Chief Minister is not here ready to rejoin the debate. I think it is very important. It should not be left hanging there, and we should bring the debate on forthwith.

Question resolved in the affirmative, with the concurrence of an absolute majority.

Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister

Motion of censure

Debate resumed.

MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (5.33): Mr Speaker, the proposal to build a government office building has been a farce since the start. It has been a farce since the start of this process initially under Mr Stanhope. I am sure that those opposite are quite happy to dispense with some of the baggage. They did not have the wherewithal to really stand up to Mr Stanhope when he was here as Chief Minister. They will discard the policies that they do not like now and they will certainly discard those policies that are electorally unfavourable for them in the lead-up to the election in about 36 weeks. I guess that throwing the biggest proposal—the great big government office building—out the window was, of course, a logical place to start.

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