Legal challenge

The Traditional Owners from McArthur River (Yanyuwa, Mara, Garrawa and Gurdanji) have launched a legal challenge to the Northern Territory Government’s  decision to approve the mining of and diversion of the McArthur River.

The case is expected to be heard in late March 2007.

Unfortunately the legal challenge has recieved little local attention. The Traditional Owners must be asking, what do they need to do to get more support from their fellow Territorians?

This would not be happening at Rapid Creek

See media report by Tara Ravens (AAP) in the Australian

stay tuned…


6 responses to “Legal challenge

  1. legal challenge sounds exciting;
    does it involve an injunction against works on the expansion?
    while the diversion of a major water course is clearly against the laws of nature,
    and early murmurings indicate the approval is quite probably against the law of the Northern Territory,
    IMHO, white mans law serves whoever pays the lawyers.
    I expect the NT Government will have more funds for their sharks than the McArthur TOs will.
    that said,
    this legal action could buy a bit of time,
    giving us mob in the public some space for demonstating our opposition to this abomination,
    and them mob in the gubberment some time to come up with an artistic way to flip back out of this insane trajectory.

    lots of love to your lawyers!

  2. Apparently the legal challenge is directed at the procedure followed by the Minister for Mines in approving the mine and not at the merits of the project. This was the only legal avenue available. The question is: did the Minister follow correct procedure in approving the mine or did he make errors (and perhaps made a decision outsidee his powers) that would invlaidate the decision. There seems to be a good case to argue that the Minister did not follow the requirements contained in the Mning Act and/or the Mining Managment Act when arriving at his decision. It will be interesting to see the outcome of the judicial review in this case but be warned that this is really a delaying process as the Minister, if he loses, will probably have the option to remake the decision, only this time following the correct procedures.

  3. Pappinbarra Fox is right, the case is mainly about procedure rather than merits. If successful, however, it could force the NT Government to remake the decision. We (the community that cares) needs to work hard to assist the NT Government to make the right decision. Nothing wrong with tackling MRM and Xstrata directly either.

    There are other avenues for legal challenge and they are being explored. I will post details as they come to hand…

  4. Unfortunately the comments by Brumby had to be removed as they were offensive and possibly defamatory.

  5. Act II

    Unfortunately the comments by Brumby had to be removed as they were offensive and possibly defamatory.

  6. Yeah, I like the photos two.

    While I know there are no perks such as luxury travel, five star accommodation and personal fees when it comes to taking on a multinational mining monolith, the photos demonstrate a level of stage-mangagement, and the legal action even greater coordination, so yes, congratulations to the NLC and ECNT for any support they have managed to give the Traditional Owners.

    I attended one of the public meetings in Darwin, and from the passionate and thoughtful way so many visiting Traditional Owners stepped up to the microphone to describe the value of the river, and their firm opposition to the diversion, it’s clear that they were committed, not co-erced.

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