Traditional Owners welcome extra time for consultation
With proposed changes to the Native Title Act being moved off to a Senate Committee for scrutiny, members of the Wangan and Jagalingou (W&J) Traditional Owners Council today welcomed the additional opportunity for dialogue.
The Senate Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs is due to report on the Bill on 17 March.
Spokesperson for W&J Traditional Owner Council Mr. Adrian Burragubba said, “It’s clear the Government is hell bent on getting these amendments through to please the mining lobby and advantage miners like Indian conglomerate Adani.
“The Government’s task of negotiating this amendment through the Senate is fraught, with Labor and the Greens voting against the Bill in the House of Representatives.
“We welcome the extra space, created by Labor and The Greens, for the Aboriginal community to consider the impact of the changes, designed to ride roughshod over our rights.
“We are deeply concerned by this Bill and other Indigenous leaders we are speaking to have not even had time to learn of the proposals.
“We will use this period to obtain further advice from senior counsel and get our serious concerns about the Bill across to the Parliament.
“The Senate Committee scrutinising the Bill will be hearing from us, along with the rest of the Aboriginal community.
“If the amendment passes in its current form the Government will hand miners like Adani one more tool to divide and conquer Aboriginal people,” Mr Burragubba said.
For information & to arrange interviews: Anthony Esposito, W&J Council advisor – 0418 152 743