Asylum Seekers


Mr GARDNER (Morialta) (15:20): My question is to the Minister for Police. Can the minister advise the house what is being doneto find the group of young asylum seekers who are reported to have fled their homes in northern Adelaide this week?

The Hon. A. PICCOLO (LightMinister for Disabilities, Minister for Police, Minister for Correctional Services, Minister for Emergency Services, Minister for Road Safety) (15:20): I thank the honourable member for his question. As the honourable member would know, that is an operational matter. I have full confidence in the police that they are doing their utmost to locate them.

Mr GARDNER (Morialta) (15:21): A supplementary. Can the minister advise if he has received a briefing on this matter?

The Hon. A. PICCOLO (LightMinister for Disabilities, Minister for Police, Minister for Correctional Services, Minister for Emergency Services, Minister for Road Safety) (15:21): I thank the member for the question. When I became minister I sought briefings on a whole range of matters, as you would. I also sought a briefing on how many incidents occur a day or how many activities occur a day. There are approximately between 1,700 and 2,000 taskings a day. I do not seek 2,000 briefings from the police every day.

Mr GARDNER (Morialta) (15:21): A supplementary. Is the minister saying that he does not consider reports that seven young people, children and students at school, fleeing their homes and potentially being vulnerable is not worthy of seeking a briefing from the police who have been making comments on behalf of the government?

The Hon. A. PICCOLO (LightMinister for Disabilities, Minister for Police, Minister for Correctional Services, Minister for Emergency Services, Minister for Road Safety) (15:22): Not at all. I have the utmost confidence in the police to do their job properly. If I was to seek a briefing on one matter and not another, I would then be accused of saying that one matter is more important than another. The police—

Ms Chapman interjecting:

The SPEAKER: The deputy leader is warned for the second and final time. Minister.

The Hon. A. PICCOLO: I trust the police to bring matters to my attention which require my attention.

Mr GARDNER (Morialta) (15:22): A supplementary, sir.

The SPEAKER: Isn't this a fourth supplementary?

Mr GARDNER: I will rely on you for that information, sir. Can the minister perhaps confirm that he will seek a briefing on this matter and establish in particular on what basis—and I quote the police spokesman saying that there are 'no concerns for the safety or welfare of any of those missing'—that has been made—at least to the minister's own personal satisfaction and confidence that that has been made?

The Hon. A. PICCOLO (LightMinister for Disabilities, Minister for Police, Minister for Correctional Services, Minister for Emergency Services, Minister for Road Safety) (15:23): Mr Speaker, I thank—

Ms Chapman interjecting:

The SPEAKER: The deputy leader, if her lips move out of order again, we will be without her for an hour. Minister for Police.

The Hon. A. PICCOLO: I would have thought that at least the member for Bragg being a lawyer would understand the difference in the way the police—

Members interjecting:

The Hon. A. PICCOLO: I am out of my depth? You're over there, I'm over here—I'm out of my depth?

Members interjecting:

The SPEAKER: The Minister for Health is called to order. The Minister for Education is called to order and warned a first time.

The Hon. J.M. Rankine interjecting:

The SPEAKER: And warned a second and final time. Minister for Police.

The Hon. A. PICCOLO: Clearly, the member for Morialta doesn't have any confidence in the police because he has asked me the question. The question was—

Mr GARDNER: Point of order.

The SPEAKER: Point od order?

Mr GARDNER: As per the standing orders I take offence to the comments and ask that the minister withdraw them.

The SPEAKER: It is simply not offensive for a minister in an answer to say that he thinks a member does not have confidence in the police. If the member for Chaffey wishes subsequently to make a personal explanation, I am sure he will be granted leave. The member for Morialta’s point of order was an impromptu speech for which he should be removed, but since he was removed unjustly not long ago I will let him off. The member for MacKillop has either a point of order or an impromptu speech?

Mr WILLIAMS: I am seeking clarification, sir, on the ruling you just gave, that somebody can suggest during question time that they think somebody else does not have confidence—

The SPEAKER: In the police.

Mr WILLIAMS: In the police or anybody else. Sir, wouldn’t that constitute debate, when they are expressing their opinion about somebody else? Shouldn’t the minister therefore be ruled out of order?

The SPEAKER: No, because the line of questioning carries the imputation that the minister should have sought a briefing and the minister is saying the reasons he does not think he should have sought a briefing, and one of those is that he has confidence in the police about operational matters.

Mr WILLIAMS: But he expressed another member’s—

The SPEAKER: It is germane for the minister to say what he is saying and the remedy is not a point of order: the remedy is a personal explanation.

Mr WILLIAMS: Sir, I come back to my original—

The SPEAKER: You mean you are going to repeat the point of order I have just declined?

Mr WILLIAMS: No, I was not making a point of order. I was seeking an explanation as to—

The SPEAKER: And I have just given you one.

The Hon. J.J. Snelling: Sit down!

The SPEAKER: Who said ‘sit down’?

The Hon. J.J. SNELLING: I did, sir.

The SPEAKER: The Minister for Health is warned for the first time, but I thank him for his confession. The member for Napier.