Debates Day 4 - Friday 23 June 2006
Parliamentary Record 8
Debates for 10th Assembly 2005 - 2008; 10th Assembly 2005 - 2008; Parliamentary Record; ParliamentNT
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
DEBATES Friday 23 June 2006 2630 government. Obviously, that is the role those people have been asked to fulfil. It does not come as a surprise; it is borrowed from other Labor governments. Territorians can legitimately question whether it is an abuse of taxpayers money. Certainly in the production of fact sheets and other information there are, in some instances, legitimate and useful publications produced, but there is a growing sense, even within these units within the public service, that they merely exist to assist this government to concentrate and position itself on re-election. The government has significant staff on the fifth floor. Marketing and communications pervades almost every aspect of this government, from communications directors downwards. There is a propaganda machine operating within this government. Where is the promise of Labor in 2001? Neither has changed. We have also seen Territorians money being used to poll Territorians on key issues. TIO, middle schools, they are good examples. The Chief Minister called it something else, but we all know what it was, it was polling. The timing was very suspicious, and that is why people are very suspicious. Middle Schools were polled early this year, as was TIO. I do not think you have to be a rocket scientist to work that one out. In relation to the various publications this government produces, I note the Chief Minister, when in opposition, had a great deal to say about the glossy brochures. Even a quick search, if you hit the word Martin and glossy in the Eighth Assembly, reveals at least 59 entries. That gets back to the hypocrisy and inconsistency that is Labor in 2006. The third theme that was strikingly obvious was that Labor has no vision for the Territory. I again refer to the very public and, no doubt embarrassing comments, although no doubt a little less embarrassing than the comments contained in the memorandum deliberately written, signed and leaked by the member for Millner. I understand there is a witch-hunt trying to find out who did leak it, but certainly it was not an accident to write and sign it. It is worthwhile to revisit the comments of Mr Gerritsen This is a government that is reactive. It responds not to the needs of Territorians, it responds to itself. That is arguably best demonstrated in the way in which the member for Millner was subjected to no doubt what was an embarrassing and humiliating experience by having to Mrs Braham: What does this have to do with estimates? Ms CARNEY: Everything. Here are the themes, member for Braitling. This is about the budget, member for Braitling. I am sorry you have so much difficulty with it. We have spent the last week in budget estimates. You know what the reason for the budget is? It is to pay for the promises of the Australian Labor Party, the promises they made to Territorians, and all the matters associated with it. So when you look at the policies of Labor and the great sums of money prescribed to those policies, and compare it with what is Members interjecting. Ms CARNEY: Mr Acting Chairman, I do ask that you contain the member for Braitling, she is being offensive. Members interjecting. Mr Acting CHAIRMAN: Order, order! Please, we only have a minute-and-a-half to go. Ms CARNEY: Thank you, Mr Acting Chairman. No doubt the member for Braitling will desist. I cannot say I will look forward to her contribution. Mrs BRAHAM: A point of order, Mr Acting Chairman! That remark by the Leader of the Opposition was most unnecessary. She should be looking forward to my contribution. Mr Acting CHAIRMAN: There is no point of order. Ms CARNEY: Mr Acting Chairman, one need only look to the comments made by Rolf Gerritsen, which would explain why the member for Millner did what - could you please bring her into line? - why the member for Millner did what he did. It illustrates why Labor does not have any vision for the Territory and the way in which they dealt with the member for Millner illustrates that they are more concerned with themselves than the future of the Northern Territory. In that regard it was surprising that the Chief Minister was herself surprised as Minister for Indigenous Affairs about the contents of the Lateline program on Wednesday night. This is a government, Mr Acting Chairman, which talks the talk but does not walk the walk. As we saw this week, the cracks are already starting to appear and it does have everything to do with this budget because the budget is, so Labor says, its foundation, and the fund from which all money for Labor programs for the so-called benefit of Territorians comes. There is no doubt that Labor cannot manage the incredible wealth that it has received. One need only look in most output areas and the results simply are not there. We do
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