Muckaty mob on tour

Tennant and District Times

THE Northern Land Council (NLC) has taken group of traditional owners from Muckaty on a junket to Spain in bid to woo them into signing a new land deal.

The group of 26, including two government officials and NLC representatives, left Darwin on Wednesday.Fearful of losing the current Federal Court case challenging the nomination of the nuclear dump site at Muckaty, the NLC is hoping they can convince another group of traditional owners to nominate a site.

Their itinerary includes a visit to El Cabril where a radioactive depository is operated by Enresa, the Spanish Government agency that has won the tender to design the nuclear waste dump for Muckaty.

The trip was shrouded in secrecy with the NLC ignoring media queries.

Meanwhile, Federal Resource Minister Martin Ferguson was one of the casualties of the Federal Government’s botched leadership coup.

And that is good news for everyone opposed to the proposed construction of a nuclear dump at Muckaty.

Mr Fergushima proved to be arrogant and coercive in his role as Minister Muckaty, refusing to negotiate with, or even meet with, traditional owners and community members opposed to the radioactive plan.

Australian Greens Senator Scott Ludlam said Mr Fergushima’s departure presents a circuit breaker for the Federal Government to progress a real solution for Australia’s radioactive waste problem.

Gary Gray is the new Resources Minister - for the time being at least.

“If responsibility for the waste site is to remain with Mr  Gray’s portfolio, he should immediately move to drop the campaign to dump the waste at Muckaty Station,” Senator Ludlam said.

“The job of building an appropriate facility and finding an appropriate site for dealing with the country’s radioactive waste material clearly belongs in the science portfolio - currently held by Greg Combet.  The Government now has a chance to fix that mistake.”

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