Message of support to Tennant Creek rally from Bruce Reyburn Japaljari in Wollongong – 8 May 2011

I acknowledge the traditional owners for this country – past, present and yet to come. I acknowledge the Wirnkarra Dreaming in the country and the Wumparrarni law.

Minister Martin Ferguson in Canberra cannot hear you. He has no ears.

We need to make new ears for all those government people in Canberra so they can hear you. So the government in Canberra can hear both sides of the story, not just Papulanyi law.

Something is wrong with that Papulanyi law – it is making too much trouble at Muckaty. We need new ears for that Canberra mob so they can hear true words about country by Wumparrarni law.

The words I bring to this rally is “Wumparrarni sovereignty” – which means the right of the whole group to make important decisions.

This is what President Bill Clinton said in Executive Order 13175–Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments
November 6, 2000:

“Our Nation, under the law of the United States, in accordance with treaties, statutes, Executive Orders, and judicial decisions, has recognized the right of Indian tribes to self-government. As domestic dependent nations, Indian tribes exercise inherent sovereign powers over their members and territory. The United States continues to work with Indian tribes on a government-to-government basis to address issues concerning Indian tribal self-government, tribal trust resources, and Indian tribal treaty and other rights.”

That is how things are in the United States, but not in Australia. I am waiting to hear what you say about Wumparrarni sovereignty at this rally.

Many people in Australia and overseas can hear you, and are ready to help.


Bruce Japaljari, Wollongong NSW