PM pledges $5m for Bob Hawke scholarship

Bob Hawke. Photo: Getty
Bob Hawke. Photo: Getty

THE legend of much-loved Labor prime minister Bob Hawke will be honoured through a new scholarship, Scott Morrison has announced.

The prime minister pledged $5 million for the General Sir John Monash Foundation to a create a new annual scholarship – the Bob Hawke John Monash scholar.

Mr Morrison made the announcement while paying tribute to the late prime minister at Parliament House on Wednesday, thanking him for his remarkable service to Australia.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

“There was a great romance that played itself out in every part of this land with Bob Hawke,” the prime minister told the chamber.

“They knew each other, he and the Australian people.

“They forgave each other. They understood each other’s virtues and they identified with each other’s weaknesses. In Bob Hawke’s own words, it was a ‘love affair’, and indeed, it was.”

Just weeks after speaking at a state memorial service for Mr Hawke, Labor leader Anthony Albanese shared heartfelt gratitude for his “generous mentor and friend”.

“He was at once our leader and our cheerleader,” he said.

“He was ahead of us calling us on, and yet, somehow, he was also walking alongside us, and for good measure, giving us an encouraging push from behind.

“Bob was hardly a stranger to ambition, but his ambition embraced the rest of us.”

Bob Hawke pictured with wife Blanche d’Alpuget and former prime ministers Paul Keating and Julia Gillard in 2016. Picture: Getty Images

Both chambers of parliament will spend the day remembering Mr Hawke before adjourning as a mark of respect following his death in May at the age of 89.

Regular business will be suspended until Thursday, following the tradition of devoting the entire day to condolence speeches upon the death of a prime minister.

He was Australia’s prime minister between 1983 and 1991, leading Labor to four election victories before being replaced as leader by Paul Keating.

MPs paused for a moment’s silence in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, after the formal opening of the 46th parliament.

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