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Tuesday, 8 November 1977
Page: 3091

Mr SHIPTON (Higgins) -For a few brief minutes I would like to endorse some of the comments that have been made in this chamber tonight. First of all, I thank you, Mr Speaker, for the courtesy you have shown me and for the courtesy you have shown to the House. I think the Prime Minister (Mr Malcolm Fraser) and the honourable member for Fremantle (Mr Beazley) summed up my feelings on the matter. Some who know more than I say that you are perhaps the greatest Speaker the House has known.

I have enjoyed serving with the honourable member for Evans (Mr Abel) both on the back bench and particularly on the government members industry and commerce committee of which he was secretary. He served the back bench well, his constituents well, and that committee well. A great tribute has been paid to the honourable member for Herbert (Mr Bonnett), and I endorse it. I wish to pay tribute also to two members of the Opposition. In this day and age too few Australians realise the things that members on both sides of the chamber have in common. Some people have a vested interest in pointing out our differences. I have had the privilege of serving on two parliamentary committees with the honourable member for Fremantle- the father of the House. They were the House of Representatives Select Committee on Specific Learning Difficulties and the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence. I have enjoyed learning from his experience. I have enormous respect for him. I regard him as a distinguished and great Australian. I made that remark on one occasion at the opening ceremony of a building in my electorate, to which he was properly invited. Many people found it strange that an honourable member on this side of the House would pay a compliment to an honourable member on the other side of the House. As has been demonstrated tonight, there is much more in common between us than perhaps the community realises.

The other honourable member of the House to whom I pay a tribute is an electoral neighbour of mine, the honourable member for Melbourne Ports (Mr Crean). He is a man who understands the needs, the problems and the aspirations of the people of the City of Prahran which we have served jointly. I have never had an argument with him about matters concerned with the electorate. I have received the greatest degree of cooperation from him. He has served his people well and he has served the people of Prahran well. Apart from our differences m political policy and philosophy, the thing that saddens me most is our disagreement about The Glugs of Gosh by C. J. Dennis. Perhaps we can sort out that disagreement in the future.

I also pay a tribute tonight to one of the attendants who has served this House for approximately 14 years. I refer to Harry Ryan who has been an attendant in the public gallery for that period of time. He is a World War I veteran of Gallipoli. He recently returned to Europe on a holiday and, as one of his colleagues said, he picked up a few medals which he was meant to get when he was there the first time. People like Harry Ryan have served this Parliament well. Thank you, Mr Speaker, for giving me the opportunity to speak.

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