Cultural Heritage

Mabo judges perverted the course of justice

Eddie Mabo

While the 1992 Mabo judgement was a major milestone in Aboriginal history, we must remember that the judges in this case presented the same cowardice as Justice Blackburn in the Millirrpum Gove case in the 1970s.

In the Gove case, the court gave much weight to the evidence presented by anthropologist Ronald Berndt who coined the phrase, "the Aborigines don't own the land, the land owns them" or words to that effect, thus resigning our people to forever being part of the natural flora and fauna of this country. It must also be stated that the Gove matter was not presented with the 1872 Pacific islanders Protection Act as amended in 1875.

In the Gove matter Justice Blackburn was presented with enough evidence to permit him to make the same conclusions as did the High Court in Mabo but failed to do so. I think this was because of the extent of uncertainty the decision would have presented the Australian state, territory and federal governments in respect to land rights for the white population. [node:read-more:link]

Kakadu National Park preparing for 40th Anniversary

"We work together so hard, we always stick together to come to every meeting and we talk about everything — like our country, our Mirrar children, we don't want them to wander off somewhere else — we want to keep them here, and help us work in our country, to look after our mother country," says Annie Njalmirama, TO.
 
At the heart of it all, traditional owners are calling for fundamental changes to the lives, opportunities and living conditions of Indigenous people in Kakadu - and that this time, the spoils of tourism will be shared equally.

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