Member for Eden-Monaro Dr Mike Kelly was today sworn in as the Minister for Defence Materiel, after Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced his promotion into the Ministry on Saturday.
Dr Kelly took the oath in a ceremony at Government House and will take up his new portfolio immediately.
As Minister for Defence Materiel, Dr Kelly’s responsibilities include the acquisition of military materials and equipment, science and technology matters relating to their development, skills and industry policy, and helping to develop the national Defence Capability Plan.
Dr Kelly, a former Army Colonel who entered the Parliament in 2007 after a 20-year military career, said his appointment was a great honour.
“I am intensely aware of how important this job is, having seen first-hand during my military career what can happen if you don’t get it right,” Dr Kelly said.
“At the end of the day, you’ve got a soldier out there depending on their equipment for his or her survival. There can’t be any greater responsibility for a Minister to remind themselves every day that, at the end of the chain, somebody’s life is at stake.”
While his new portfolio will be demanding, Dr Kelly said his focus on Eden-Monaro would be as strong as ever.
“My two great passions are the military and Eden-Monaro, where my family goes back 160 years. I feel extremely lucky to be able to serve the people of Eden-Monaro and our brothers and sisters in the armed forces.
“While the role of Minister comes with extra time and travel demands, I will be out in the electorate as much as ever – and I will keep working hard to secure the golden future our region deserves.”
Dr Kelly’s Office: Robbie Rynehart 0459 810 654