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Thursday, 16 February 2017
Page: 1358


Mr PYNE (SturtLeader of the House and Minister for Defence Industry) (15:15): On behalf of the government, and as Leader of the House, I would like to add my own personal remarks of thanks to Robyn McClelland. I would like to associate myself with the remarks made by the Speaker. Mr Speaker, as you, the Manager of Opposition Business in the House and I, as Leader of the House, know, we rely very heavily on the clerks and the deputy clerks on a daily basis when this House is sitting to keep the parliament operating in the way that it does so professionally and expertly.

Around the world, the Australian parliament is regarded as a model for democracies of how to conduct parliament and how to allow it to exist successfully. Representatives of many countries come to see this parliament in operation, to meet with the clerks and the deputy clerks and to understand our processes. A large part of that reputation is built on the work of the Clerk, the Deputy Clerk and other people who assist. Robyn McClelland has been doing it for 18 years at the table. She has seen a great deal in that time, as has the Clerk, David Elder. I have been here that entire time. I have to say that Robyn McClelland is an absolute pleasure to deal with and always has been. She is very professional and, as the Leader of the Opposition said, very modest. She is a great public servant and a great supporter of this parliament. I have always been very grateful for your objective, unbiased advice whether I have been in the opposition or whether I have been in the government—that is another feature of our parliament. We will miss Robyn, and I think David will particularly miss Robyn as well. You will be very hard to replace. Thank you very much for your service.