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Thursday, 19 March 2009
Page: 3346

Mr OAKESHOTT (12:49 PM) —I will speak very briefly on the Aviation Legislation Amendment (2008 Measures No. 2) Bill 2008 because I spoke on this in the Main Committee and expressed some concerns there, and I am sure the minister has read and digested those at length. I just want to get on the record that this is a good example of the processes of this place that work. Legislation was presented in this place and the other place; there were negotiations and compromise has been reached. I think the legislation is better because of that.

I also want to emphasise the increased role that I am seeing for the Privacy Commissioner and the role that the Privacy Commissioner is being seen to take in a number of pieces of legislation—including, in fact, one that looks to have kept people up most of the night. I think it is a good thing that this place is focusing more on the liberties of the individual and the importance of those liberties as we develop and enhance the legislation that goes through these chambers.

As part of that, the point I want to re-emphasise from my speech in the Main Committee is that, although the intelligence gathering by various agencies is important, unrestrained and uncontrolled intelligence gathering should be of concern. I think greater transparency and greater accountability in that intelligence-gathering process strengthen the security of this nation and the security within aviation. Therefore, I am pleased to see at least a step forward in this amendment where the Privacy Commissioner is playing a great role.