Aboriginal Lands Parliamentary Standing Committee

14 Mar 2007 archivespeech

This speech indicates support for the Aboriginal Lands Parliamentary Standing Committee.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK: It gives me great pleasure to rise to support this motion. I am somewhat bemused that this is the only standing committee of this parliament that has a statutory obligation to report annually on its work, although I note that a number of the standing committees do so, anyway. In a bipartisan fashion, I endorse the comments of the Hon. John Gazzola, and I also acknowledge that an Independent (Hon. Andrew Evans) is a member of our committee. It is a multi-partisan committee, which I think behaves in a way of which the South Australian public would be proud. In all our work, our intent is for the welfare of the people we represent: that is, the Aboriginal communities on the lands that are designated under those particular acts.

In speaking to this motion, I confess that I had been a member of this committee only since the election, which is about four or five months. As a relatively new member, I commend the work of former members of the committee, that is, the late the Hon. Terry Roberts, Mr Kris Hanna, my Liberal colleague the Hon. Robert Lawson, and former Democrat member, Ms Kate Reynolds. As a new member, I feel quite privileged to be part of the committee. All the people who have hosted the committee have extended to us great warmth, as well as assisting us in our understanding of the work of the committee.

I do not wish to speak for very long, but I would like to acknowledge our outgoing secretary, Jonathan Nicholls, who has recently advised the committee that he will no longer be in its service. He has been a fantastic coordinator of our visits to the lands and has been incredibly efficient in terms of our communications. He will be sadly missed by the committee. I commend the motion to the council.