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Thursday, 16 February 2017
Page: 1359

Mr BURKE (WatsonManager of Opposition Business) (15:17): It is with great sadness that we see Robyn leave the parliament. When I arrived in 2004, it was Robyn who gave a whole series of presentations at our induction. I remember asking a question that the answer was not known to. Three days later, a detailed paper arrived that Robyn had prepared for me explaining exactly what the circumstances would be. That question went to the counting of the ballot for Speaker. It has turned out that I have never had the opportunity to invoke the advice that I was given!

Of all the sections of the Public Service and of all the different sections of our own parties, it is interesting to note that the clerks probably have the best-quality information, and they have never leaked against anyone. It is an extraordinary thing. Contestable for all of us—and it is contested every day in the parliament—is how well we serve the people we are answerable to, but there is no question at all about the way the clerks serve the parliament. Robyn has been an extraordinary example of that. The moments that each of us have loved most and loved least in this parliament have all been based on clerks' advice. Robyn, we wish you and Sam well. Do not underestimate the extent to which we are filled with gratitude. We wish you well but we will feel the loss.