Tuesday 5 February 2019
Minister Matt Canavan running a protection racket for Adani, takes cheap shots at the United Nations
FOR DAYS we’ve been entertained by the spectacle of Resources Minister Matt Canavan running a protection racket for Adani, while taking cheap shots at the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
A letter he relies on, supposedly from ‘the traditional owners’ and ‘rebuking’ the UN for taking urgent action, has no authority from either the W&J Council or the registered native title Applicant. The sender, Mr Leslie Charles Tilley III, has never been appointed in any capacity as a spokesperson of the W&J people.
But Canavan champions this misrepresentation while deriding the UN for his own political purposes. His mind numbing repetition that a vote of ‘294-1’, taken at Adani’s rent-a-crowd meeting, is somehow a real expression of the W&J people’s sovereignty, is absurd.
The sham Adani ILUA remains before the Federal Court, with a full bench appeal hearing due in May. Justice Roberston said we have “an arguable case of error” in the single judge’s decision. And the UN CERD accepted our request for assistance after concluding there are serious grounds for concern.
Canavan and Adani keep saying that Adrian Burragubba and the W&J Council don’t speak for the Traditional Owners. One thing is absolutely certain… Canavan and Adani don’t.
Neither Canavan nor Adani would know land rights if they fell over them. We will persist with our petitioning of various UN bodies because the legislation and processes in Australia fall well short of international laws and standards to which Australia is a signatory.
The Coalition Government has an appalling record on Aboriginal rights, and we operate under a worse native title regime today than when the UN CERD, more than 20 years ago, found the Howard government’s “10 point plan” changes to the Native Title Act were racially discriminatory.
The mining industry’s Resources Minister, Adani and the Coalition Government: fighters for Aboriginal Land Rights? Canavan must think we’re fools if we believe that. He is not going to run W&J business.