Page 983 - Week 04 - Tuesday, 24 March 2015

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Tuesday, 24 March 2015

MADAM SPEAKER (Mrs Dunne) took the chair at 10 am, made a formal recognition that the Assembly was meeting on the lands of the traditional custodians, and asked members to stand in silence and pray or reflect on their responsibilities to the people of the Australian Capital Territory.

Rt Hon John Malcolm Fraser AC CH

Motion of condolence

MR BARR (Molonglo—Chief Minister, Treasurer, Minister for Economic Development, Minister for Urban Renewal and Minister for Tourism and Events): I move:

That this Assembly expresses its deep regret at the death of the Right Honourable John Malcolm Fraser AC CH, the 22nd Prime Minister of Australia and champion for human rights and social equality, and tenders its profound sympathy to Mr Fraser’s family, friends and colleagues in their bereavement.

Following a rich life, Malcolm Fraser, a true giant of Australian politics, a lifelong humanitarian, passed away in the early hours of the morning of 20 March 2015, aged 84.

Mr Fraser never retired from public life. He kept speaking out, writing, and supporting generations of politicians from all sides of politics until his final days. He had many advantages in his life, and, to his enormous credit, he used them to the greatest effect, for the benefit of all Australians. This is his legacy to Australia.

Malcolm Fraser was born in 1930 in Toorak, Victoria, to a family who held substantial rural holdings. He was educated in Victoria before going to Oxford University, graduating with a degree in philosophy, politics and economics. He returned to work on the family farm before winning the seat of Wannon in the 1955 general election, and at age 25 became the youngest member of federal parliament. He went on to hold the seat of Wannon for 29 years, through 11 elections, until his resignation in 1983.

It is worth noting that during his political career and as a family man, Mr Fraser, his wife, Tamie, and his children, Phoebe, Angela, Hugh and Mark, actively embraced living in Canberra, calling our city home for many years. Mr Fraser educated his children in Canberra schools.

That moment in history in 1975, just seven months after becoming Leader of the Opposition, and after 20 years in politics, when Mr Fraser was asked to take over as caretaker Prime Minister following the dismissal of the Whitlam Labor government, could have forever and completely defined Malcolm Fraser’s life and career. It certainly was a defining moment in Australian politics and one that the country will never forget.

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