Territory Stories

Debates Day 4 - Tuesday 30 October 2012



Debates Day 4 - Tuesday 30 October 2012

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Parliamentary Record 1


Debates for 12th Assembly 2012 - 2016; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 12th Assembly 2012 - 2016




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Hansard Office

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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 Tuesday 30 October 2012 243 show their respects to Saus. We heard beautiful eulogies from his three sons, Michael, Tony and Matthew, lovely readings from his grandchildren as well as the little ones with the offertory. The measure of a life well lived is through the lives it touches. Saus family, friends and former colleagues can confidently say his life was well lived. May he find peace and comfort, and may we all find peace and comfort now we have seen the remarkable legacy this very fine man of decency and integrity has left for the Territory, shining through in his fine sons and his many beautiful grandchildren. My deepest condolences to you, Norma, and your family. Mr ELFERINK (Attorney-General and Justice): Madam Speaker, I pass on my condolences to the family of Saus, particularly his widow, Norma. I was in the police force for about 10 years before Saus retired. I joined in 1983 and he retired in 1992, as the Leader of the Opposition pointed out. I remember my first impressions of Saus Grant - I only discovered after his death that his name was Arthur - but my first impression as a frightened 17-year-old police cadet was this grim figure who used to move about the police station, then in Mitchell Street, just across the road from this House. I remember what I considered to be a very stern figure but, of course, as a 17-year-old first year police cadet you cannot differentiate, particularly at that level of immaturity, the difference between a dignified disposition and grimness. Through the eyes of a 17-year-old, those two are not easily separated. As time passed there were certain things I discovered about Saus - I still feel uncomfortable referring to him as Saus; I am more comfortable referring to him as Assistant Commissioner. What I realised, and what I came to discover about Saus Grant, or Assistant Commissioner Grant, was that I could trust him as a source of advice, I could go to him and not have a raised voice cast in my direction. And whilst he expected the very best of me as a very young police officer, he never asked me for the impossible. Only with hindsight do you realise that when you deal with people like that, they are not riding you and are not trying to make your life difficult as a police officer, they are challenging you to become better than you are. Through that process, some of their capacity, thoughtfulness and consideration rubs off on you. I realise in hindsight that Saus was not grim or dour, he was very patient. He was patient in being a leader and taking people along with him. At no time in my career as a police officer did I ever hear a raised voice from Assistant Commissioner Saus Grant. He always carried himself with complete composure and, whilst it was a very businesslike approach, it was always thoroughly ethical, moral and upright. By conducting himself in that fashion he left for all of us who cared to look, even after he retired, a legacy we could touch upon as to what it was and should be to be an upright, decent and effective police officer. I know the Grant family; one of my first partners in the police force was Neil Grant, and we had some wonderful times together. The influence of Saus Grant could be seen through Neil and Kenny, who I met a few years later in the police force. As Attorney-General, it was my great pleasure to have his son, Michael Grant, as my SolicitorGeneral. He is a very fine fellow and a reflection of his father in many ways. I thought about a single word to describe Saus Grant, and I have already heard it several times here today. The word which sprung into my head was dignified. I will finish with an observation by Aristotle: Dignity consists not in possessing honours but in the consciousness that we deserve them. Mr HENDERSON (Wanguri): Madam Speaker, I thank the Chief Minister for bringing this condolence to the parliament. It is very fitting that this afternoon we speak about an incredible man. I am pleased to contribute to this condolence because Saus had a long and distinguished career in the Northern Territory Police Force and was loved and highly regarded by so many people across the Territory. My contribution this afternoon is informed by my father-in-law, Tom Baker, who served with Saus for many years, and my mother-in-law, Joy Baker, who was very close to the Grant family. As we have heard, Saus joined the Northern Territory Police Force in 1959 and retired in 1992. Thirty three years is a long, proud and very distinguished career. We have heard that Saus retired as an Assistant Commissioner and was awarded the Australian Police Medal in 1986. What a difference it must have been for Saus to come to the Northern Territory in 1959 from rural New South Wales; that was a huge decision back in those days. As the Leader of the Opposition said, Darwin was a town of 10 000 people. Over his 33 years, what a change Saus saw across the Northern Territory and within the police force. I have not gone back to the annual reports of 1959; I do not know whether they had to be tabled in parliament, so I am unsure how many police officers served in our police force in 1959, but it