BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
Routine of Business: Suspension of Standing and Sessional Orders
Mr CARL SCULLY
(Smithfield—Minister for Police) [3.31 p.m.]: I move:
That standing and sessional orders be suspended at this sitting to:
(1) provide that the routine of business be varied to not call on motions for urgent consideration, matters of public importance and private members' statements;
(2) permit the introduction and passage through all stages of the following bills, notice of which was given this day for tomorrow:
James Hardie Former Subsidiaries (Special Provisions) Bill
Building Legislation Amendment (Smoke Alarms) Bill
Local Government and Valuation of Land Amendment (Water Rights) Bill;
(3) permit the introduction and passage through all stages of the Security Industry Amendment Bill and the National Parks and Wildlife (Further Adjustment of Areas) Bill; and
(4) the passage through all remaining stages of the Poultry Meat Industry Amendment (Prevention of National Competition Policy Penalties) Bill.
Order! I call the honourable member for Murrumbidgee to order for the second time.
Mr CARL SCULLY:
Every year, every session, the Opposition votes for upper House decisions that truncate the ability of this House to debate matters. Opposition members cannot complain when we are compelled to do this. At midnight tonight the guillotine will operate and the Legislative Council will not consider legislation passed in this House beyond that time. The Opposition cannot come in here and complain about it!
Order! A representative of the Opposition will have an opportunity to contribute to the debate at the appropriate time. The Minister has the call.
Mr CARL SCULLY:
I do not like having to move motions such as this but once again the Opposition has forced my hand. It is with a heavy heart that I have moved this motion.
Mr JOHN BROGDEN
(Pittwater—Leader of the Opposition) [4.33 p.m.]: The Opposition opposes this abuse of parliamentary process by the Minister for Police, who, without a doubt, has today had the worst question time in his history as a Minister. He scurried out of this Chamber like a rat up a drainpipe, covering his own backside! He has made an absolute fool of himself today on two important counts. When called upon by the honourable member for Epping to express confidence in the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Dave Madden, he mumbled his way through a statement and sat down without offering any confidence. What is more important, he revealed that the Government will not call on the Police Integrity Commission to expand its investigation into the matters surrounding the Bulldogs phone tap, the bugging, because it knows that the person responsible works directly for the Commissioner of Police.
The Minister is in real strife today. To top it off, in a wet-lettuce-leaf attack on the Opposition, he reached back into Hansard
and pulled out a quote that proves categorically that the person who revealed the possession of a listening device was the Premier. The Premier certainly had a bad hair day today during question time. This Government's arrogance knows no bounds. This House is here to debate urgent matters. Members of this House want to know why the Government refuses to expand the investigation by the Police Integrity Commission as to when the original material was leaked and by whom. The Government will not expand the investigation because it knows the answer, and the answer is damaging to both the Government and Police Commissioner Moroney.
We have seen a refusal on the part of this Government to back senior police and have the truth exposed. The Government does not want to know the truth about this issue. Rather than allow an urgent debate on matters of critical importance it has rammed more legislation through the House. This is not a busy Government; this is a lazy Government! We had a presentation from the Premier in response to a dorothy dixer about a desalination plant in Sydney. Did he tell us where it is going to be located? No! Did he tell us how much it will cost? No!
Mr Tony Stewart:
Point of order: The remarks of the Leader of the Opposition do not relate to this procedural motion. I ask you to bring the honourable member back to the leave of the motion.
Order! The Leader of the Opposition may continue. However, I will not allow him to rally calls of support from those on the Opposition backbench by deliberately directing questions to them. The Leader of the Opposition will address his remarks to the Chair.
Mr JOHN BROGDEN:
I am very pleased you made that ruling because it is one we are going to use every question time henceforth. Every time the Premier seeks the support of his pathetic back bench—
Order! The honourable member for Swansea will come to order.
Mr JOHN BROGDEN:
Every time the Premier looks for support from his front bench we will use those words. Today the Government has also abandoned a debate on the Western Sydney Business Awards. We thought the walrus was going to give us a dissertation about his dinner on Friday night, but no, the Government has abandoned Western Sydney. This House has important matters to debate. The Opposition wants to know why the Government is running and hiding from an expanded Police Integrity Commission investigation into Operation Vail.
Order! The honourable member for Bathurst will come to order.
Mr JOHN BROGDEN:
We want to know where the Leader of the House has gone. He has left the honourable member for Bankstown in charge of the House. The only thing worse than the Minister running the Police Service is the Minister running the House!
Question—That the motion be agreed to—put.
The House divided.
Mr J. H. Turner
Mr R. W. Turner
Question resolved in the affirmative.
Motion agreed to.