Northern Territory

Jul 31, 2009

Macklin’s town camp takeover derailed by big guns

Within 24 hours of Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin's announcement, the town camp takeover had well and truly derailed.

Chris Graham

Tracker managing editor

The Indigenous Affairs Minister was all smiles and sunshine on Wednesday after announcing she had signed a 40-year lease with Tangentyere Council over the Alice Springs town camps, in exchange for $138 million worth of housing and infrastructure upgrades.

"This agreement is a significant win for the Australian and Northern Territory Governments, Alice Springs town camp housing associations, Tangentyere Council and town camp residents," said Minister Macklin. "It means we can start working together to transform the appalling living conditions endured by many people living in the Alice Springs town camps."

But within 24 hours of this announcement, the town camp takeover had well and truly derailed. Yesterday in court, lawyers for town camp resident and prominent anti-intervention campaigner Barb Shaw obtained a temporary "stay of execution". Shaw is seeking an injunction against the minister compulsorily acquiring the town camps, or signing any agreement with Tangentyere because the tenants of the town camps have never been properly notified that their rights are about to be extinguished.

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3 thoughts on “Macklin’s town camp takeover derailed by big guns

  1. Graeme Lewis

    Could this minister be this stupid? Surely not!!!

  2. Chris Graham

    Afraid so, Graeme. She pushed and pushed and pushed Tangentyere for a letter, and when the package arrived it had a ticking bomb in it. Macklin didn’t even know it!

  3. Liz45

    It’s a constant source of amazement to me, that despite aboriginal people for decades(centuries) complaining about paternalism, patriarchy(downright offensive behaviour) successive Ministers insist on continuing this insulting and derogatory practice. What on earth is wrong with this Minister? If she’s an example of a new beginning with indigenous people, a willingness to change some pretty horrific situations, what a damned stupid way of going about it!

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