‘The House’ wins again, but our fight for Country is far from over

Stories / Friday, August 23rd, 2019


Adani has sunk to a new low, setting a brutal new standard for corporate behaviour. 

For the first time in Australia’s history, a company has bankrupted an Aboriginal leader for standing up for the inalienable rights of First Nations people to our law, our country and our culture. 

We must mount a defence of our people. Adani has chosen to attack our leaders, forcing Adrian Burragubba into bankruptcy and using their mouthpieces in the media to marginalise our struggle and denigrate our Council. 

Our fight for our rights – for our people – and in defence of our ancestral Country has been going on since day one of colonisation. Please donate as we mount the next phase in our Defence of Country.

   Adrian speaking at the NAIDOC celebration

This morally bankrupt attack on our cultural leader lays bare the abuse of power and the greed of this rich corporate bully. 

But we will not succumb to this intimidation. The Council will take care of our own. 

The W&J Council will not be deterred by this latest move in Adani’s “attack dog” strategy, or retreat from our support for our leaders and people. No still means no!

We are calling on all First Nations people and all our supporters to stand against the ruthless suppression and legal harassment of our human rights defenders.

We will open a First Nations Rights fund to help protect our people. Please donate today.

And we will continue to resist the miners’ invasion of our lands. We will take all actions available to us. 

We will not be trespassers on our own Country.

We will be on Country to perform ceremonies and customary observances near our sacred Doongmabulla Springs, to acknowledge our Ancestors continued presence and pay respect to the land. 

This weekend, we will conduct an important cleansing ceremony and corroboree to protect our cultural sovereignty and continue our ongoing fight for survival.

This will take place in the area Adani wants to build its mine. Adani are affecting the peace of the land. We must pay respect to the land and the ancestors and let the Government know we are still using the land for our cultural purposes.

   Dancing on country

After our ceremony, a Facebook live event direct from our country will take place. We will be standing our ground on the land that the State intends to hand to Adani.

You can join this important moment through our Facebook page on Sunday 25 August at 10:30am. Adrian will be speaking direct from our Cultural Sovereignty Camp on the mine site.

Adani may seem to have the upper hand. But this fight is far from over. We have halted them for eight years so far. We will not relent in our determination to choose our own future, without dependency on coal mining. 

We will always fight to ensure our ancestral lands are not destroyed.

We need your ongoing support. When it comes to Aboriginal rights in Australia, the odds are stacked against us. 

Last month’s decision by the Federal Court to dismiss our appeal simply confirms that.

The Federal Court decision did not pull back the veil on the dubious dealings leading up to and after the Adani meeting more than three years ago.

   Outside the Federal Court in May

We know there has never been any genuine free, prior and informed consent for Adani’s mine. 

A system where ‘no does not mean no’, a system which is racially discriminatory, cannot be considered fair and just.

We will continue to challenge the Government’s actions in giving approvals to Adani without regard to First Nations cultural rights in our land and waters, and the plants and animals that depend upon them. 

We know we have always had a fight on our hands. That fight is not just with Adani, but with the Federal and Queensland Governments. It is shameful that the State delivered mining leases to Adani without an ILUA or our consent, and twice the Federal Government intervened in our cases to guarantee Adani’s interests.

This is what we have always been up against. We know what happens when we say no in a system that expects our compliance. But this is not who we are. 

We are the people from the land. The keepers of the ancestors. The water protectors.

Please stand ready to share in our fight to protect the richness and vitality of the land. 

With your support, we have the means and ability to fight on.

Adrian Burragubba, Murrawah Johnson & Linda Bobongie

for the Wangan and Jagalingou Traditional Owners Family Council

Remember, you can  purchase our “Adani, No Means No” or “Water Protector” T-shirts to support us. 

And you can share these links to encourage others who care about land justice to donate to our Defence of Country fund, and to join the 130,000 people who have signed our petition.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *