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19 June 2014


Mr ALEXANDER (Bennelong) (09:57): I rise to inform the House of a true champion of the Australian-Chinese community in my electorate of Bennelong. Hugh Lee is a leader in the truest sense. He is a humble and intelligent man, whose key focus is the betterment of the local community. As President of the Australian Asian Association of Bennelong, better known as the AAAB, Hugh Lee was one of the first to congratulate me on my election in 2010, and he immediately asked me to serve as patron of the association. Hugh Lee also serves on a variety of different local committees as well as being a board member for the Ryde Hunters Hill Symphony Orchestra. As a result, Hugh was a worthy recipient of an Order of Australia medal last year, for which I was delighted to write a supportive letter of reference.

Last year Hugh joined me, along with the President of the Eastwood Korean Chamber of Commerce, Jason Koh, in a campaign for CCTV cameras to be installed in Eastwood to deter instances of small crime. A funding request had been rejected by the Ryde city council in 2011. As representatives of the local Chinese and Korean communities, Hugh and Jason explained to me that many offences were not being reported due to cultural differences. Despite all the great efforts of the Eastwood police, these concerns have remained. In response, in August last year I announced a $200,000 federal grant to the City of Ryde for the installation of CCTV cameras. The recent unprovoked violent assault on a Chinese man in Eastwood led to Hugh and state MP Victor Dominello joining me to circulate a petition to local businesses. Within one week, we had over 160 signatures, which Hugh and Jason presented to the council. Last week, the council announced their intention to apply for this funding. Hugh and Jason’s efforts were central to this decision.

Hugh Lee recently announced his resignation as President of the AAAB, citing that he simply had too much on his plate. Always modest, he claims he is moving aside to let another community leader, Danny Yap, bring new ideas to this important local community group. Hugh Lee is a stalwart of the great community of Bennelong, and I am honoured to have been—and to continue to be—connected with him on many levels within the great electorate of Bennelong.

Hugh, I thank you for your fine efforts in all your leadership roles in our community. I look forward to continuing to work with you for many years. Hugh, you are a good man and I am privileged to call you ‘friend’.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! In accordance with standing order 193 the time for constituency statements has concluded.