Media Releases

Kakadu Traditional Owners pay their respects to Malcolm Fraser

20 Mar 2015

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The Mirarr people, whose lands include parts of Kakadu National Park as well as the Ranger and Jabiluka uranium deposits, are saddened by the news of Mr Malcolm Fraser’s passing.

More than thirty years ago, as Prime Minister, Mr Fraser declared the first stage of Kakadu National Park and oversaw the enactment of the Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act. These visionary decisions continue to have significant impacts on the lives of many Aboriginal people across the Northern Territory. While the passage of the Land Rights Act imposed the Ranger Uranium Mine on Mirarr country it also delivered real property rights to Mirarr and other Aboriginal people across the Northern Territory and remains the high water mark of Aboriginal Land Rights in Australia.

In more recent times, Mr Fraser has been an advocate for justice and decency for Aboriginal communities from within the conservative side of politics.

Yvonne Margarula, Mirarr Senior Traditional Owner said:  “I want to pay respect to Mr Fraser, who was an important leader. With Mr Gough Whitlam, Mr Fraser ensured that our land rights were acknowledged and granted to us and other Bininj (Aboriginal) people in the Territory.

“He has been a friend to Aboriginal people over a long period.

“We also respect that he became Ambassador for Children’s Ground, one of our important partnerships in Kakadu and West Arnhem, to change the future for our people.  We are thinking of his family at this time,” Ms Margarula concluded.

 

Contact Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation: 08 8979 2200