The Hon. DAVID CLARKE (10:03): I move:
(1) That this House notes that:
(a) on Thursday 24 March 2016 at Parliament House, the Association for the Development of Arabic Folk Poetry in Australia and the Arab World held a function to honour Australian poets of Arabic descent for their efforts in advancing the Zajale style of Arabic language folk poetry;
(b) those who were honoured at the function comprised:
(i) Issam Melkey, poet, born in Bechmizine, North Lebanon;
(ii) George Mansour, poet, born in Mitrite, North Lebanon;
(iii) Anna Chalouhi, poet, born in Darb Achtar, North Lebanon;
(iv) Romeo Oueis, poet and journalist, born in Rachghine, Zgharta;
(v) Wadih Saadeh, poet and journalist, born in Shabtin, North Lebanon;
(vi) Charbel Baini, poet, writer, critic, scholar and journalist, born in Majdalaya, North Lebanon;
(vii) Fouad Neaaman El-Khoury, poet, journalist and accountant, born in Bouhwaita; North Lebanon;
(viii) Shawki Moslemani, poet and journalist, born in Kawnine, South Lebanon; and
(ix) Dr Emile Chidiac, poet, journalist, social scientist, accountant, researcher; interpreter, translator and linguist, born in Beirut, Lebanon.
(c) those who attended as guests included:
(i) the Consul-General of Lebanon in Sydney, Mr George Bitar Ghanem;
(ii) the Consul of Iraq in Sydney, Miss Rokiya Abd Alkader;
(iii) His Eminence, Archbishop Paul Saliba, Primate of the Antiochian Orthodox Church, Archdiocese of Australia, New Zealand, Philippines and Dependencies;
(iv) Sheik Khaled Taleb, representative of Dar Alfatwa of Lebanon in Sydney;
(v) Sheik Iyad Abou Arja, representative of the Mufti of Lebanon;
(vi) Mr Luke Foley, MP, member for Auburn and Leader of the Opposition;
(vii) Mr Jihad Dib, MP, member for Lakemba;
(viii) the Hon. David Clarke, MLC, Parliamentary Secretary for Justice; and
(ix) representatives of various Arabic-Australian community organisations.
(d) the Association for the Development of Arabic Folk Poetry in Australia and the Arab World was established on 6 May 2013 by Dr Bahia Abou Hamad, with its objectives including:
(i) developing and promoting Arabic folk poetry in Australia and the Arab world;
(ii) organising seminars, lectures and poetry events relating to Arabic folk poetry in Australia, the Arab world and the Arabic diaspora;
(iii) publishing academic studies and research regarding Arabic language folk poets and poetry; and
(iv) encouraging young poets to enhance their talents.
(2) That this House:
Thursday, 2 June 2016 Legislative Council- PROOF Page 3
(a) congratulates those Australian poets of Arabic heritage who were honoured at the function held at Parliament House on 24 March 2016; and
(b) commends the Association for the Development of Arabic Folk Poetry in Australia and the Arab World, its President, Dr Bahia Abou-Hamad, and its executive for its ongoing work in encouraging Arabic-Australian poets and Arabic folk poetry in Australia.
Motion agreed to.



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