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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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES Tuesday 30 October 2012 244 was obviously very different to the police force today. According to my father-in-law, and other police officers I have spoken to from that era, in many ways Saus laid the groundwork for todays modern, highly professional and highly regarded police force. His contribution to the integrity of the police force and the standing the police force has in our community today should not be understated. Over his 33 years of service, Saus mentored and trained so many people, including very many in his years in charge of the Police College. He personally and positively influenced the careers of so many police officers who went on to become very senior officers in the police force. These include - and it is not an exhaustive list - former Commissioner Mick Palmer, Assistant Commissioner Robin Chalker, Assistant Commissioner Graeme Charlwood, my father-in-law Commander Tom Baker, and Commander Terry OBrien, just to name a few - all police officers who are very highly regarded and all recipients of Saus guidance and influence. As we have heard, he had many personal qualities. He was a compassionate man, not just with his work colleagues but with the broader community as well and, and as we have heard, a man committed to living his life through a very strong moral code. He was passionate about the welfare of fellow police officers, not only at work but also away from work. He was always the first to offer help, assistance or advice to a fellow member going through a hard time. Some personal reflections from Tom and Joy: The Baker and Grant families were very close. My wife, Stacey, went to school with Tony in Alice Springs and both matriculated in the same year from Alice Springs High School. Joy reflected in a note to Norma, on hearing of Saus passing, how Saus was the first to visit her in hospital in Alice Springs when she gave birth to their fourth child, Jessica. I do not know what Tom was doing at the time or why Saus was the first to visit; I have to get to the bottom of that issue. However, during that visit Saus spoke lovingly of Norma and his mother and talked about the special glow women have in motherhood. Joy has never forgotten that visit. Saus was also a great supporter of Tom and once went to see him play rugby league for United at Anzac Oval. It was the only time that Saus went to cheer Tom on because Tom was a legend in his own mind as a player for the United Rugby League team. Unfortunately, Saus was running five minutes late for the game and Tom had been sent off within the first five minutes. Saus was so disgusted at Toms lack of regard for the rules of the game - he had been sent off within five minutes and had violated his own personal commitment to the code of fairness in his sport - that he never went to see Tom play rugby league again. I suppose that tells part of the story. However, Tom and Saus played squash together in Darwin for many years and shared very many memorable social occasions, but over a few glasses of red wine some might not have been as memorable as others. Tom would like to have acknowledged here this afternoon that he held Saus in extremely high regard in so many ways and that all the Baker family were very saddened to hear of his passing. I offer my personal condolences to Norma, Michael, Tony and Matthew. I know you are all very proud of Saus, his life, his compassion, and his achievements. The Baker family share so many fond memories as well. Saus made a huge contribution to the finest police force in Australia and, therefore, to the Northern Territory. May he rest in peace. Mr WESTRA van HOLTHE (Primary Industry and Fisheries): Madam Speaker, I thank the Chief Minister for bringing this motion to the House. It is with great sympathy that I note the passing of Arthur Alexander Saus Grant on 2 October this year. Until his recent passing I did not know his Christian names; I have only ever known him as Saus. I think back to my young days as a police constable and the penchant Australians seem to have for shortening names. I remember agonising for a very long time about what name Saus might have had that could have been shortened to Saus. I never figured it out, but it was always an interesting exercise to go through. Saus joined the Territory Police Force on 29 July 1959 with the registered number of 116. That says much about the man; a registered number going back that far means he was a police officer in the days of real frontier policing in the Northern Territory. I am sure it was an amazing time to be a police officer and can only imagine the experiences he had as a junior constable all those years ago. He served until 7 June 1992, reaching Assistant Commissioner before retiring after a notable career, which as has been pointed out, was a career of 33 years. On 26 January 1986, Saus was awarded the Australia Police Medal which is an outstanding award reserved for Australian police officers who achieve distinguished service in the force. Looking back at that date makes me feel like a young fellow because I joined the police force on 20 January 1986, just six days before he was