ESPERANCE LEAD POLLUTION - MAGELLAN METALS, AND BRIAN BURKE AND JULIAN GRILL
I refer to the scandalous public health disaster that is developing in Esperance following revelations of widespread lead pollution.
(1) Is it the case that Magellan Metals Pty Ltd engaged the services of disgraced lobbyists Brian Burke and Julian Grill?
(2) Will the Premier investigate whether Brian Burke and Julian Grill played a role in Magellan Metals gaining approval to export lead through the port of Esperance?
Mr A.J. CARPENTER replied:
(1)-(2) I thank the member for the question and I commend him for the concern that he has shown for this issue in his electorate. It is a very serious issue. I find it extremely disturbing that such an occurrence could have taken place in Esperance. We need to ascertain how and why it happened to make sure that it never happens again and to ensure that the health of people in Esperance is protected.
Dr G.G. Jacobs: Do you support a select committee inquiry?
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: I support an investigation into the matter. We have not had that discussion yet. We will have a discussion on what form it will take. The proposition the member has put forward is completely new to me. I will ask the member a question: does he have evidence related to Brian Burke and the company that he would like to have investigated by the Corruption and Crime Commission?
Several members interjected.
Mr C.J. Barnett: Burke and Grill, are they involved in this one too?
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: It is unfortunate that we have such an immature approach to the issue by people such as the member for Cottesloe.
Mr C.J. Barnett: It is important if they are involved.
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: He behaves every day in this chamber like a spoilt six-year-old. He is pushing 60 years of age and he has not matured one iota since he entered the Parliament in 1990.
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: In fact, pushing 60, he is actually in regression rather than in a state of maturation.
Several members interjected.
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: It is remarkable that there has never been a serious commentary provided in the media of this member’s performance in this chamber over the time he has been here. He is a disgrace to the Parliament and will be remembered as a shocking person in his performance in this Parliament.
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: I ask the member for Roe not to follow the same path.
Dr G.G. Jacobs: I am asking questions for the kids of Esperance, Premier.
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: I have never heard this suggestion put until the member for Roe put it in his question. Does the member for Roe have any evidence to suggest that the proposition he is putting is true?
Dr G.G. Jacobs: I am asking you.
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: I have just said that I have never heard this proposition put. Let me ask the member for Roe: does he have any evidence that suggests it is the case?
Mr C.J. Barnett: Ask them. If you don’t know, find out the answer and come back into Parliament.
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: Why do members opposite not equally ask me whether Brian Burke was providing drugs to the West Coast Eagles? Why do they not equally ask me whether Brian Burke is running every business in Western Australia?
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: Why do they not equally ask me whether Brian Burke is directing every single policy direction of every single government in Western Australia or Australia? I have never heard the proposition put.
Dr G.G. Jacobs: How does lead powder come 950 kilometres to Esperance from Wiluna?
Mr J.A. McGinty: Brian Burke, obviously!
Dr G.G. Jacobs: It goes past Geraldton and Kwinana. They get an export licence and it ends up not being palletised.
Mr A.J. CARPENTER: I ask the member for Roe that if he has some concerns about this potential proposition, please take them to the relevant authority.
The SPEAKER: That completes question time.
The SPEAKER: I think members will find that when I say that question time is now over, that also means interjections.