Territory Stories

Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 1 May 1991



Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 1 May 1991

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Parliamentary Record 3


Debates for 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994




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 1 May 1991 deceitful letter because that person does not exist. The address given does not exist. In fact, the suggestion is that the honourable minister may know who 'Roy Turner1 is. Indeed, reputedly, 'Roy Turner' is a member of his staff. Since then, we have continued to hear a litany of lies and deceit. Over and over again, the minister spoke today about the task force being established for the benefit of Territorians and in the interests of doing it the right way. He said the COGSO representatives on that task force agreed with the recommendations. The honourable minister knows that the President of COGSO did not recommend the closure of any of the 4 major urban primary schools. In fact, the other member, who was appointed by the minister, did not recommend the closure of either Karguru or Tiwi. Mr Stone interjecting. Mr BAILEY: Do you want to do that? You censure me. You present the dissenting report and its recommendations and I will withdraw H at. Mr Stone: It is available. It will be circulated to anyone who asks. Mr BAILEY: Mr Speaker, it is quite clear that the minister has continued to mislead this Assembly in relation to the way the task force was established. He tried to make it appear that the task force justified the school closures. In fact, what we had was 3 Department of Education members who were there to look at a Department of Education recommendation. They were not given the ability to decide on which schools should close or remain open or even to make recommendations in relation to that. They could work only from the report prepared under the direction of the Department of Education and the minister. They did not have a free rein in terms of which schools to visit. For example, they were not permitted to go to Larrakeyah. It was not on the list of schools which they could visit. Why? Because it is in the minister's electorate. We hear the honourable minister ask how on earth the opposition can suggest that the school closure agenda had anything to do with politics. In its original report to the ERC, the Department of Education listed Millner Primary School as one of the schools to be closed. However, this recommendation was ignored by the government's own task force. The department had made a recommendation to close Millner Primary School when it knew that such a closure could not be justified on any but political grounds. The department then had to accept the reality that the task force ... Mr Reed: So the department conducted itself politically, did it? Mr BAILEY: The department is used politically all the time. Mr Reed: I just wanted to make sure. You have clarified it now. Thank you very much. Mr BAILEY: For example, prior to the demonstration, the Secretary of the Department of Education sent a letter to schools informing them that they were not allowed to do anything which might indicate any objection to the minister's efforts to close them down. Mr Stone: Tell the truth. Mr Reed: Show us the letter. 789

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