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Thursday, 5 February 2009
Page: 585


Mr McCLELLAND (Attorney-General) (2:36 PM) —Mr Speaker, on indulgence, very briefly, I thank the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition and the Leader of the National Party for their words. I would also like to acknowledge the work of Emergency Management Australia. A number of officers remained awake around the clock, as one or two of us did last night. I would also like to thank the Australian defence forces, and acknowledge that my colleague the Minister for Defence, whose company I enjoy in this House, has been of tremendous assistance in that respect.

While we have focused this day on the floods, we should also recognise the tremendous work of all governments and also all agencies in respect of the devastating bushfires that have recently confronted Victoria. Again, there is an indication, as is always the case in Australia, of cross-party support, of cross-government support, working with volunteers and very impressive professionals to assist Australians to cope with these sorts of natural disasters.