Territory Stories

Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 23 November 1994



Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 23 November 1994

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Parliamentary Record 6


Debates for 7th Assembly 1994 - 1997; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 7th Assembly 1994 - 1997




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Wednesday 23 November 1994 Law, I believe his credibility in the community will wane even further. The Department of Laws advice was sound. It was accepted by the Department o f Education and with my endorsement. I would not be prepared in any way to risk the potential success o f an action against the person involved in the particular case mentioned or in any other case. Over the years, Attorneys-General and other ministers have been very careful to ensure that the words they use do not detract in the least from proceedings in the courts. I would not want it on my conscience. It is obvious that the member Wanguri could not care less about his conscience. I do not think he has one. I will take the Department o f Laws advice any day. For the member to suggest that the Department o f Education was deliberately delaying the release o f a report is a nonsense. To suggest that a delay into next year would minimise any legal action against the department is a nonsense o f itself, and on 2 bases. First, the report was not, as the honourable member claimed, all but completed and was in the hands o f the department. That is not true. The report by the officer from the Office of the Public Service Commissioner had barely begun. That is why nobody had contacted the member for Wanguri. He can sit back and hold his evidence. It will be needed. However, if it is anything like the evidence that he is supposed to have had for the BCF coronial inquiry, I would advise him not to waste his time. After many months, we are still waiting for the extra evidence that the member for Wanguri claims would warrant the inquiry being reopened. We have not had an ounce o f evidence from him. He is known to be without substance. He has a big mouth in the Assembly, but he is not prepared to come forward with any evidence or even an allegation outside o f this House. If he were to repeat outside this Chamber the allegations in which he questioned the motives o f the department, suggested that the department moved deliberately to have any inquiry stopped, and questioned its motives in delaying the release o f non-existent reports, I believe he would get his comeuppance. When he did get on to the subject o f BCFs today, he made further absurd statements. He said that one o f the worst miscarriages of justice in the Northern Territory was the action o f the Department o f Law that led to the death o f Mark Halliday. On previous occasions, he has made similar statements deliberately in this House. I f he believes he has the necessary evidence, if he believes he has truth on his side, he should go outside the front door o f Parliament House and repeat his words about the Department o f Law and its officers and the Department o f Education and its officers. We will see how he goes then. I do not believe for a minute that the man has the courage to do that. He referred to the screening o f teachers. This year, under a policy initiated by the Minister for Education and Training and the Department o f Education, all o f the 1994 recruits have been screened and that included police checks. No further comment is required. The policy is in place. More than 350 new teachers have been screened. If he is aware o f any existing teachers being under suspicion, he knows the process. Let him follow it. As far as I am concerned, the member for Wanguri is short on facts, big on bull and is absolutely a waste o f space in this place. Mr EDE (Stuart): Mr Deputy Speaker, I would like to draw to the attention o f the House tonight a problem in my electorate that has been continuing for some time. That problem is the standard o f the road from Old Andado through Santa Teresa to Alice 1870