Page 2780 - Week 09 - Thursday, 8 August 2013

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MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: But according to the House of Representatives Practice, you may not use such a word, even in a quotation. I ask you to withdraw it.

MR SMYTH: I will withdraw it. I spoke to the Clerk before this and he said that was open to interpretation. In a way, that is the whole sentiment about this. We want to sanitise this story, and we want—


MR SMYTH: I have already withdrawn. I withdraw.

MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you very much, Mr Smyth.

MR SMYTH: And that is the problem. That is him speaking his words. They are not my words; they are his words. That is how he saw life.

MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Yes, and the House of Representatives Practice says you may not even use it in a quotation.

MR SMYTH: Well, reps practice should get changed. We do change things from time to time.

In 1972 he founded the first Aboriginal theatre company called Nindethana and he has performed with the cream of Australia’s actors, directors and writers, including Geoffrey Rush, Neil Armfield, John Romeril and Tracy Moffat. It was a truly wonderful night. It was a great honour to be there. That you could go through what this man’s been through in his life and still have a sense of humour is an absolute credit to him and an indication of just how wonderful the human race is and how much all of us could learn. If you ever get the chance to see Jack Charles v The Crown, I commend you to do so.


MR DOSZPOT (Molonglo) (5.55): I have had the great pleasure in recent weeks of visiting a number of Canberra schools as part of my travels around all schools in the ACT. In each of these schools I have met some very impressive principals, teachers, other staff and students. What has particularly been brought home to me is the very wide range of opportunities and schooling choice for Canberra families. Whether they choose to enrol their child in a public school or in one of the non-government schools, each school in whatever category, government or non-government, has their own unique features, their own emphasis on what it is they see as most appealing and what is of most importance to their community.

There are so many great stories to be told, so many great teachers in both sectors and so much history in education to look back on. When I was elected to the Assembly, I was determined that I would seek to represent the concerns of all Canberra families in respect of education, and I have gone to great length to ensure that I speak for all schools in Canberra. In the past 11 years, I cannot in all fairness say that all ACT ministers for education in this place have done that.

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