Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Disclaimer: The Parliamentary Library does not warrant the accuracy of closed captions. These are derived automatically from the broadcaster's signal.
National Nine News -

View in ParlView


An historic day of hope and healing

to right the wrongs of the past. as the nation tries

We say sorry. and school children Thousands of office workers

stop to witness the occasion down during his speech in reply. but the Opposition Leader is howled Shame, shame. Good evening. to its Aboriginal people Australia has formally apologised which received an emotional response in a speech by the Prime Minister and right across the nation. inside the House begins our coverage - Our political editor Laurie Oakes a momentous day. and Laurie, it really has been It certainly has, Mark. but not on this occasion. The word 'historic' is overused, We've seen history made today, backed by the Opposition, with Prime Minister Kevin Rudd,

the 'sorry motion' determined to make a springboard for an all-out effort education in Indigenous communities. to improve health, housing and It was a long time coming, uttered the words but at last a prime minister has been waiting for. Indigenous Australia of these stolen generations, For the pain, suffering and hurt families left behind, we say sorry. their descendants and for their what he called Kevin Rudd's apology broke

and deafening silence" Parliament's "stony, stubborn

in Australia's history - on a dark chapter of up to 50,000 children the forcible removal from their Aboriginal families

of Federation. during the first 75 years just once - Mr Rudd did not say 'sorry' he used the word repeatedly. As Prime Minister of Australia, of Australia, I am sorry. On behalf of the Government members of the stolen generations, Indigenous people, including many

galleries packed the House of Representatives move a resolution to hear the Prime Minister stain from the nation's soul. that he said would remove a great People wept as Mr Rudd spoke. the degradation The hurt, the humiliation, and the sheer brutality of the act from her children of physically separating a mother and on our most elemental humanity. is a deep assault on our senses Aboriginal Australians Parliament House soon after dawn began queuing at the doors of as a momentous event. to witness what they clearly saw I'm Kevin, lovely to see you. Mr Rudd stood in a courtyard Before Parliament convened, greeting 100 Aboriginal guests, stolen generation members, overwhelmingly

by the Government. brought to Canberra Very brave man. the right thing. We're just trying to do prime ministers still living Four of the five former to mark the occasion. were in the chamber Only John Howard stayed away. Mr Rudd called on fellow MPs In his speech,

and make the apology a turning point. to seize the day the politicians, The nation is calling on us,

our infantile bickering. to move beyond a joint policy commission He proposed Opposition Leader Brendan Nelson co-chaired by himself and

an effective housing strategy to develop for remote Aboriginal communities the First Australians and then work out how to recognise in the Constitution. Dr Nelson agreed immediately. in a display of bipartisanship, As the two leaders shook hands there were unprecedented scenes,

applauding them in turn. A clearly emotional Mr Rudd standing to clap and cheer. the crowd in the galleries

supported the motion The Opposition Leader

scarred by removal from family. and acknowledged that children were We are sorry.

But some of Dr Nelson's comments in the Indigenous audience. angered many that removal from squalor It is reasonably argued led to better lives. screen in Parliament's Great Hall Those watching his speech on a big with loud handclaps. and sought to drown out his words turned their backs

the Opposition Leader's speech. also turned their backs during who were in the Great Hall, and another staffer, his press secretary, Lachlan Harris, when it was revealed Later Mr Rudd was embarrassed

of apology to Dr Nelson. I have written a personal letter boycotted the vote, A handful of Liberals rising to indicate support, but with all MPs in the chamber

to be passed unanimously. the 'sorry' motion was deemed National Nine News. Laurie Oakes, a little later We'll return to Laurie Oakes for his analysis of Mr Rudd's speech. who was outside Parliament House But now to Daniel Street apology on giant television screens. with a huge crowd watching the Daniel, they are remarkable scenes. emotions ran wild here, Mark, as the apology was delivered,

others clapping with people here crying, and many simply embracing each other. with everyone saying It was truly touching, of something very special, they'd witnessed and were party

the journey towards reconciliation saying today spells a new start in and new hope for the future. We say sorry. but it triggered It was one small word, an emotional response. uttered the word 'sorry', As soon as Kevin Rudd the tears started flowing. As Prime Minister of Australia, of Australia, I am sorry. On behalf of the Government A crowd of more than 2,000 people outside Parliament gathered on the lawns for the history-making apology.

from all over the country - They'd come families, school groups, pensioners, black and white Australians, of forced removal. many with painful stories We lived all these policies that it came from the Parliament. and I enjoyed the fact that he said It makes me very sad. My father was part of it. He was taken away in 1913 and we had to live with that. were flying triumphantly Red, yellow and black flags sharing of emotion. and there was an extraordinary punctuated by applause many times. The Prime Minister's speech was Mr Rudd formally moved the apology. The biggest ovation coming when

APPLAUSE What is means to me is a new beginning. He struck a real chord.

I don't know about other people, but I found it very emotional as a white person. It was stirring, it was moving, it just proves what really happened. It really gets to you and makes you feel that sorry. I think today's apology is an amazing milestone in the history of our country. I was very moved by it. It was just wonderful, it was heart-rendering. Soon after Brendan Nelson began his speech supporting the apology, like those inside Parliament, many turned their backs. Later, Patrick Dodson,

a man often described as the father of reconciliation, welcomed the apology as an important first step. The whole issue of making good on the past including compensations for the stolen generations should indeed be pursued. Daniel Street, National Nine News. The astounding response to the apology was not just in Canberra, a wave of emotion swept right across the country, as thousands paused to watch and listen,

some shedding tears and many applauding and cheering. For 30 minutes this morning in Martin Place, work could wait. There was history in the air. Peering out from thousands of umbrellas -

people who never thought the day would come, all watching a giant image of the Prime Minister deliver the Government's apology. Simple words that return some hope to a generation that was stolen. APPLAUSE AND CHEERING It was extremely moving, it was wonderful to be here. It's about time it has happened. They liked it so much they gave the PM a standing ovation. In the heart of Redfern at 'the block', they wrapped it up with more applause. At Glebe Primary School, a chapter and history they won't forget. Schools, no matter the suburb, anywhere there was a TV, that felt so many had been waiting for the words for so long. In the words of one member of the stolen generation here,

the word 'sorry' was just so important because it was seen as a sign of respect that now allows Aboriginal people to build new relationship with other Australians. At Redfern we found Ivan Clarke. From an Indigenous man who was taken, I accept the apology. He was taken from his mother in 1975, she died before he could find her.

I never got to see her again and I never got to tell her I loved her. Like Canberra, the goodwill from PM's speech seemed to evaporate when the Opposition Leader spoke, they turn their backs in Melbourne... Shut up, shut up. ..and drowned him out in Perth. But at the block there were too busy celebrating to even notice. Mark Burrows, National Nine News.

Now Laurie Oakes joins us again from Canberra - and Laurie, those scenes of cheering and clapping at the end of Mr Rudd's speech, has that ever happened before in the Australian Parliament?

No Mark, not like this. Normally any noise from the galleries

is jumped on by the Speaker but today, those in the public gallery - mainly members of the stolen generations -

were a key part of proceedings and their participation was welcomed. In nearly 40 years of watching Federal Parliament I've never seen anything like it.

Everyone was caught up in the emotion, aware that they were part of a landmark event. The Parliament might be a bearpit normally but today it rose above that and, I think, truly reflected the soul of the nation.

To the rest of today's news now - and the Commonwealth Bank has announced a record half-yearly profit. It made $2,37 billion - up a staggering $280 million compared to the same time last year. I believe that after taking market volatility factors into account,

today's result is a solid one. Last week, the Commonwealth was criticised for raising its interest rate higher than the official increase by the Reserve. There was also an important sign today On the markets - Commonwealth Bank shares plummeted more than 6% because investors thought it should have earned more. That led the overall stockmarket down, with banks bearing the brunt of the fall.

The commander of Australian forces in East Timor has hit back at criticism over Monday's assassination attempts. Just hours after reinforcements arrived in Dili, the East Timorese army chief said our troops hadn't done enough to prevent the attacks.

In military terms, they call it a 'rapid force deployment'. 24 hours after the call went out from East Timor, 270 more Aussie troops and 70 Federal Police are on the ground in Dili. Their task - to rid the streets of weapons and maintain calm with a show of force. But the goodwill between the two countries quickly soured. In an extraordinary swipe, East Timor's military chief accused the international force - who are mostly Australians - of not doing enough to stop the assassination attempts. He then demanded an international inquiry. But the Australian military commander defended his troops. Unless we had information that led us to the time and a place this attack were to occur there was not a great deal that could have been done about it. With President Horta recovering in a Darwin hospital, we are learning more about the attack. When told that gunfire broke out at his home, the Nobel Peace Prize winner went back there to confront the gunmen, risking his own life, because he feared for his niece who was inside at the time. The grieving family of the rebels' leader, Alfredo Reinado, who masterminded the attack, today waited for the authorities to release his body. They have set up an altar where the dead renegade will lie until he's buried. But even in death, he still poses a risk to the country. There are fears any outpouring of emotion could trigger violence. That threat makes it all the more urgent for the authorities to round up the rest of Reinado's men. In East Timor, Damian Ryan, National Nine News. In the news ahead -

a boost for Barack Obama in America's election race. The eyesore being transformed into a jewel of Sydney Harbour. And Megan Gale fights back tears during her final cruise down the catwalk. to be recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation New York? Protect the skin you're in.

An ugly eyesore at Birchgrove is being transformed and will soon become a harbourside park.

The old Caltex refinery is the first private foreshore property in many years to be given back to the people. By anyone's real estate standards, this place has location - three hectares of headland, a gun-barrel view down the harbour, absolutely no chance of being built out. It's a developer's dream that's been handed to us. Walks all the way through there makes it more accessible to the public. A privately owned oil refinery for almost a century, when it closed, speculators offered enormous amounts of money. Somehow, the State Government got in first. It's a wonderful community victory

and it's a wonderful victory for the people of Sydney. The hard work of clearing the derelict and dangerous site began almost two years ago, buildings and storage tanks slowly removed as the construction crews took Ballast Point down to its original sandstone bedrock. By the end of this year, the native bush will be replanted, It restores a lot of the craggy green headlands that the first settlers would have seen as they sailed through the Heads. Returning extremely valuable harbour foreshore to public use won't stop with Ballast Point. The next step, a much bigger one, East Darling Harbour. Most of the old cargo sheds have already been bulldozed. Plans for replacing the old container wharves with parks and marinas are well advanced.

Peter Harvey, National Nine News. In America's Democratic duel for the presidential nomination Barack Obama has won another three primaries, with a campaign which keeps building momentum. Get all your friends to vote. Get all your friends to vote. Alright, I appreciate you. Thank you. Obama has beaten Hillary Clinton in Virginia, Maryland and Washington DC. Clinton is in Texas, using a U2 anthem to fire up her supporters. (U2 song) # Where the streets have no name. # With John McCain secure as the Republican candidate, Paul McCartney may be nearing agreement on a divorce settlement

with Heather Mills, at Britain's Royal Courts of Justice. He's reportedly accepted handing over a figure of $119 million,

made up of a lump sum of $43 million, plus 14 years of maintenance for daughter Beatrice totalling $76 million. Megan Gale has strutted her stuff down the Sydney catwalk

for the last time. The 32-year-old was near tears during her final appearance last night at the launch of David Jones's winter collection.

The Aussie stunner received a standing ovation from the crowd of 600 as she signed off on a modelling career which spanned more than 15 years. To have everyone stand as well - I got a bit of a shock when everyone stood. Had a little bit of a tear, a bit of a sniffle. Didn't lose it completely, which was nice. Megan will now transform from supermodel to superhero, playing Wonder Woman in a George Miller film in Hollywood. Ken with sport is next - and Australia's cricket tour of Pakistan is declared high risk? For now, the Aussies' greatest concern is beating Sri Lanka on Friday. Also, Porky no more - the Eels new, slim, trim, Mark Riddell. And Australian cricket's sensational new all-rounder.

GENTLE MUSIC MAN: It's my pain too. That's why I trust Children's Panadol. Nothing works faster or is more effective to relieve pain. Children's Panadol - it's my choice. There is big Rugby League news tonight - the Cowboys have told coach Graham Murray that they won't renew his deal for the next season. That will free the way for the club to pursue Wayne Bennett as their coach in 2009. Just two seasons ago, the Cowboys were grand finalist and now the man who took them there will be shown the door. Cowboys boss Peter Parr told Murray today the club wanted to go in a different direction. It has been a tough six months for Murray - he lost the Origin series with the Blues and has been replaced by Craig Bellamy. The obvious replacement is Wayne Bennett he will be free agent next year after quitting the Broncos. And a third is I've heard he's got strong support of the Cowboys. At the Eels, Mark Riddell has undergone a transformation -

from this to this. The man known as piggy has dropped eight kilograms and two chins

in the off-season. The alcohol was a big thing for me, so that has been probably the toughest part . You know, I haven't gone a month, ever before, off the beers. And burgers for lunch are a memory. He bought his own lunch today.

It was a couple of lettuce leaves and a handful of grapes. National Nine News understands that there is every chance this will be Riddell's last year at the club even though he has a contract for 2009. England is the likely option, not that Riddell is giving much away.

I haven't really thought about it and I'll wait to play out these two seasons and see what happens then.

Danny Weidler, National Nine News. The Waratahs have a new muscle man on their books

for the Super 14 season. High above the city skyline, their first-ever mascot, Tah Man, was unveiled and his message to the players was clear. Never give up, never surrender. After finishing 13th last year, the Waratahs are looking for a major turnaround. Their season starts against the Hurricanes on Saturday, Tah Man and all. Australia's cricket tour of Pakistan next month

is a step closer to being scrapped with independent security experts advising against playing in the strife-torn country. Meantime, Friday's one-dayer between Australia and Sri Lanka in Perth will be Adam Gilchrist's last game on his home ground. As Adam Gilchrist prepares for his last match at the WACA, don't mention the F-word. The farewell tour. I don't like that term. Favourite memory here - hitting the second fastest hundred in Test history. Now meet Australia's youngest-ever Test cricketer.

17-year-old Elysse Perry makes her Test debut against England in Bowral this Friday in a one-off battle for the Ashes. Any publicity we get, I guess, is good publicity at the moment, so yeah, I'm pretty privileged. In the recent Twenty20 clash against the Poms, Perry boosted the profile of women's cricket

with brilliant bowling and big hitting, including a six on the MCG. COMMENTATOR: Has she gone all the way this time? You betcha! It was one of those shots I didn't really feel it off the bat,

I just sort of hoped for the best and it kept going, so it was good. Representing Australia at cricket and soccer, the all-rounder faces a dilemma this year when she finishes high school.

School's very important to me and it is sort of my future so it's something that I need to pay particular attention to but hopefully be able to mix that with a bit of sport as well. If so, the Poms may be punished for years to come. Andrew McKinlay, National Nine News. After the break, Jaynie will have all the weather details. Coming up on WIN News... Emotions run high as thousands witness the national apology, Concerns about the future of the Gold Creek Homestead, And the Brumbies' best named to meet the Crusaders. Details next. This is a message for my man, Todd. 'WEDDING MARCH' PLAYS Todd, I'm here to tell you how you can save on car insurance with AAMI. I mean, who knows what you could buy with the savings. You following me, Todd? Love you, Toddy. SONG: # Lucky you're with AAMI. #

Mark, this cold weather will stay with us for a while. We have actually only had two days this whole summer of temperatures above 30 degrees in the city, not uncommon with a La Nina situation. 8 below average for Penrith today. The southerly kicked in around 7:00am with the strongest gusts reaching 60km/h.

Heavy rain mainly closer to the coast. Terrey Hills 12mm in 30 minutes, Gosford 42mm. 10 degrees below average for much of NSW today.

A few storms have popped up over the southern inland with falls generally under 5mm. Category 1 Cyclone Nicholas is set to intensify, bringing gales and heavy showers from tomorrow and into the weekend. The high in the south will move towards the Tasman Sea, with showers on and east of the ranges. Southerly winds along the coast will remain quite fresh. Perth has had 10 days of above 35 degrees.

Tomorrow they are going for 37. An early splash for Melbourne and Hobart. Sydney - most of you will not see showers. They should stick to coastal suburbs, especially in the morning and again at night. Surfers - pretty messy, but a good-quality ground swell should move in Friday.

Keep your winter woolies on - down to 14 overnight for the inland. No more than about 22-24 degrees and we really wont heat up in the near future. But looking mostly fine for the weekend. Perhaps this time next week we can hit the beach again, Mark! That's National Nine News on this historic day of healing. I'm Mark Ferguson. Goodnight. Supertext Captions by Red Bee Media Australia Tonight ... Tears flow as thousands gather in Canberra for the apology to the Stolen Generations, Unions A-C-T thrilled with plans to axe A-W-As, And Palerang challenged to come up with a plan for a new Braidwood water system. Good evening, Thousands of Aborigines and non-indigenous Australians have packed the lawns of Parliament House to share an historic day. Emotions ran high as Prime Minister Kevin Rudd finally uttered the words the Stolen Generations have been waiting to