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Thursday, 27 June 1996
Page: 3049

Mr CAMPBELL(4.55 p.m.) —Mr Deputy Speaker, I think your warning is very sound. The member who has just spoken, the honourable member for Melbourne (Mr Tanner), makes an absolute case for giving the minister power to remove the board. It is quite clear there is no confidence there. This board is going to lurch from crisis to crisis. It is much better that this amendment be adopted. My colleague the member for Calare (Mr Andren) and I both feel strongly about this. This is the only way that this matter is going to be resolved.

I have a view that people who fly in aeroplanes are no more entitled to safety than people who drive motor cars or travel in buses. We have to look very much at affordable safety in the air. I believe that civil aviation regulations should not put anything like as much pressure as they do on owner pilots or people flying with their families. There should be less concern with general aviation charter business—and I would charter more than anyone else in this House. I make no assessment of who is safe and who is not.

It is quite clear that these judgments have to be made. It is overwhelmingly clear from what the spokesman for the opposition has said that the minister does have to be in a position to have confidence in that board. Whatever the reason is, that does not exist now. There are going to be ongoing sniping and virtual warfare between the board and the minister. That is not conducive to safety or for legislation to ensure safety. This amendment of ours is very important. The minister should think twice about it and perhaps have a little more intestinal fortitude and not be driven by his department so much.

   Question put:

   That the amendments (Mr Andren's ) be agreed to.