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squeaking in tongues

21 May, 2009
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414. Ms A.R. MITCHELL to the Minister for Police and for Road Safety:
[..] Can the minister outline what resources are being directed to road safety, particularly in the area of policing, to enable Western Australia Police to carry out traffic enforcement in this state?

Mr R.F. JOHNSON replied:
I am delighted with the question because it once again shows the commitment of this government not only to road safety but also to policing in this state.

Mr D.A. Templeman: Will you take the police motorbikes off the road?

Mr R.F. JOHNSON: Who is that mumbling? There is a mouse somewhere.

Ms A.J.G. MacTiernan: Better than the bloody great sewer rat that we’re looking at.

Mr R.F. JOHNSON: That is not on.

Ms A.J.G. MacTiernan: Well, if you insult our side, I’ll protect them.

Withdrawal of Remark

The SPEAKER: Member for Armadale, in the spirit of what you have offered to the house, I do not want to be the minister’s minder on a daily basis; however, I would ask you to withdraw that particular comment.

Ms A.J.G. MacTiernan: I withdraw.

Point of Order

Mr M. McGOWAN: I note that the member for Armadale has been required to withdraw for referring to
someone as a species of rodent. I would ask that if that is the case, the Leader of the House should be required to withdraw his comment as well.

Mr R.F. JOHNSON: Further to that point of order, if I may —

Mr M. McGowan: No double standards. Just withdraw.

The SPEAKER: Member for Rockingham, I want to hear from the Minister for Police. I do not want to hear from anybody else.

Mr R.F. JOHNSON: On the point of order raised by the manager of opposition business, what I said prior to —

Mr T.G. Stephens: Don’t repeat it; just withdraw it.

The SPEAKER: Members, I did instruct the house—I think it was fairly clearly heard—that the only person I wanted to hear from was the Minister for Police. Member for Pilbara, I formally call you for the first time.

Mr R.F. JOHNSON: Mr Speaker, I certainly would not call anybody in this house a sewer rat. I heard a mumbling from somewhere on the other side of the house. I did not know who it was. I did not identify any member.

Mr M. McGowan: Neither did she.

Mr R.F. JOHNSON: I simply said, “Was that the rumblings of a mouse?” That was not said in an offensive way. I would not even call a member in this house a mouse. I certainly would not call a member a sewer rat.

Subject: Road Safety – Traffic Enforcement [Legislative Assembly – Questions Without Notice]

Date: 13 May 2009

Hansard reference: p. 3940 [online (pdf)]

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