Australian news, and some related international items

Labor claims Coalition’s proposed native title changes breach deal deal struck between major parties

Coalition’s proposed native title changes a breach of deal struck between major parties, Labor claims, ABC News, 2 Apr 17 By political reporter Dan Conifer Federal Labor has accused the Coalition of bungling native title changes and breaching a deal struck between the major parties.

The Coalition moved to amend the Native Title Act in February soon after a court scuttled a multi-million-dollar deal between the West Australian Government and traditional owners.

The Federal Court rejected the Indigenous Land Use Agreement (ILUA) between the parties because it was not signed by all native title claimants.

Until February’s court decision, ILUAs could be made without the support of all native title applicants.

The court ruling overturned years of established law, throwing doubt over current and future agreements nationwide.

“It is once again clear that these new amendments have not been subjected to any form of consultation with legal experts, Indigenous Australians or industry.

“The repeated breaches of faith by your Attorney-General in this matter, and the clear unwillingness of your Government to properly consult on the significant issues at hand, have meant that Labor remains concerned about some aspects of the bill.”

The correspondence was also signed by shadow attorney-general Mark Dreyfus and shadow assistant minister for Indigenous affairs Pat Dodson.

The letter said Labor wanted the Senate committee’s recommendations enacted “as quickly as possible” and offered to work with the Coalition over coming weeks……..

The amendments have not been debated in the Senate.

Parliament next sits in May.

The Coalition and Labor agreed on the need to amend the legislation to reverse the effect of the recent court decision, allowing at least 126 ILUAs already proposed or registered to continue with as few as one claimant.

But the Opposition claims Attorney-General George Brandis has proposed changes that go beyond what the major parties agreed during a Senate committee process.

Shorten ‘uncomfortable’ with Government handling of issue In a letter to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull on Friday, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten accused the Government of “repeated breaches of faith”.

“These amendments failed to deliver on the prior agreement and were again defective in a number of respects,” the letter said.


April 3, 2017 - Posted by | aboriginal issues, AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics

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