Nuclear dump plans – who speaks for country?

Land owners out of mind, out of site
Sydney Morning Herald February 27, 2010

Nuclear waste dump plans are dividing an Aboriginal clan, write Lindsay Murdoch and Tom Arup.

DIANNE STOKES says the Rudd government’s decision to push ahead with plans to dump nuclear waste on land north of Tennant Creek has caused trouble in her Warlmanpa tribe.

“People have given away land that doesn’t belong to them … now there is big trouble among us,” she says.

For centuries, Aboriginal clans followed their dreaming across the gently sloping, low scrub land that became known last century by white people as Muckaty cattle station.

Now some members of one of those clans have agreed to allow Australia’s first national waste dump to be established on 1.5 square kilometres of land they claim is theirs in return for $12 million, most of it in cash.

The terms of the agreement remain secret – even some members of the Ngapa clan who might get the money have not been given a copy.

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