I just read the article [below] at ABC online.
Whatever the Aboriginal Land Commissioner decides I hope this case gives cause for anyone involved in Land Council work to seriously reflect on the margin of difference between what it is that Land Council’s are supposed to do (which is represent traditional owners [T.O’s] in their respective region), and what it is that is actually getting or being done.
Why do some T.O’s feel that they are not being adequately represented by their local Land Council? What are the factors working against adequate representation of T.O’s by Land Councils? How might these discrepancies or problems be addressed or overcome?
These are important questions to ask because I cannot see how (in the face of an adversarial Government) ‘breaking up’ Aboriginal Land Councils into smaller fragmented bodies can or will possibly benefit traditional owner’s in the long term.
‘The Aboriginal Land Commissioner will assess an application from an Indigenous group which wants to form a new land council in the Katherine region.
In a statement, Federal Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin says she is assessing an application from a group of Aboriginal people who want to start the Katherine Regional Land Council. The group no longer wants to be represented by the Northern Land Council.
Their application has been referred to the Aboriginal Land Commissioner, Howard Olney, who will report back to the minister by the end of July. Ms Macklin says she wants there to be a “rigorous and transparent” assessment of the proposal. She says if she decides to support the bid, the matter will be referred to the Australian Electoral Commission.’