Communiqué from the Aboriginal Freedom Summit

Indigenous activist Rosalie Kunoth-Monks says Indigenous people are sick of not being represented properly.

Alice Springs 27 - 28 November 2014 - We, the Original Sovereign Peoples and Heads of Nations being assembled at the Old Bungalow, Mparntwe (Alice Springs) declare the Independence of our Nations and Peoples.


We also declare that we have and continue to be independent Sovereign Nations under the designation of the United Tribes of our Lands.

All sovereign power and authority within the Territories of the United Tribes of our Lands are hereby declared to reside entirely and exclusively in the hereditary Elders and in the Heads of the Tribes.

In our collective capacities we declare that we will not permit any legislative authority separate from ourselves to exist on our Lands, nor any function of the colonial governments to be exercised within the said Territories, unless authorised by the appropriate people or persons appointed by us.

Our authority originates from the ancient Law/Lore of the Land, also referred to as the continental common law of Australia.

We gathered at The Freedom Summit to respond to the extreme assaults from all levels of government hitting our communities including but not limited to:

- historic and growing rates of incarceration;
- continuing stolen generations;
- a suicide epidemic and;
- the growing death rate from preventable diseases.

In addition, governments have shamefully announced intentions to close down communities in Western Australia and South Australia.

Oombulgurri in WA has already been bulldozed – this is an act of aggression in an open genocidal process, on top of the continuing apartheid and land clearances through the Northern Territory Intervention.

Organisations across the continent are having funding slashed. Heritage laws are being attacked and our culture is being owned by white government Ministers.

A new land grab is happening through mining tenements and operations. This is a direct attack on Land Rights across this country.

There is no grass-roots representation of our people at the national level and the Indigenous Advisory Council is a hand-picked farce and must resign.

At this Freedom Summit grass-roots leaders from across the country have gathered to say enough is enough. To our people suffering, we say - there is hope.

We have nominated a steering committee to take the struggle forward.

We are planning future Freedom Summits to discuss the vision of our true national representation with bigger numbers and to strategise ways forward.

The fight for our rights will rise from the ashes. We are planning to lead mass action on the streets to defend our rights and enforce our vision of self-determination and continuing sovereignty.

The Freedom Summit authorised delegates are:  Tauto Sansbury, Rosalie Kunoth-Monks, John Christophersen, Jenny Munro, Les Coe, Paul Spearim Jnr, Lex Wotton, Christine Abdulla, Roxley Foley, Maurie Japarta Ryan, Helen Lee, Billy Risk, Vanessa Culbong, Richard Evans, John Singer, Ghillar Michael Anderson, Lesley Tickner, Janice Harris, Elaine Peckham, Rex Granites Japanangka, Chris Tomlins.

Freedom Summit contacts:
- Tauto Sansbury 0403 165 193
- Rosalie Kunoth-Monks (via Ngarla Kunoth-Monks) 0427 361 844


Zeige Kommentare: ausgeklappt | moderiert
Indigenous activists have demanded a new national body to represent Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander people at a conference in Alice Springs.

The Summit for Freedom has brought 50 Indigenous leaders from across the nation to discuss ways to better represenentation.

The Northern Territory's Australian of the Year, Rosalie Kunoth-Monks, told the conference it would help unite Indigenous people from the Top End to Tasmania.

"This is the beginning of black Australia," she said.

"This might be a small gathering today but it's going to grow throughout Australia.

"We will not be silenced, nor will we be controlled by the policies of any Westminster system. Black governance is coming, starting today."

Governments talking about constitutional recognition that creates no rights, imposes no obligations, is irrelevant to Aboriginal people around the country.

Michael Mansell, Indigenous activist


She also criticised current policies being implemented by the Abbott Government.

"Western Australia is being devastated right at this moment by the Prime Minister who said there was no history before Captain Cook," she said.

"Come on, pull the other leg."

Ms Kunoth-Monks made it clear she had no time for politicians and party politics.

"If anyone thinks they can be here today on behalf of a political party, the gate is that way, please leave," she said.

But one controversial politician was another speaker at the conference.

Member of the Northern Territory Parliament, Alison Anderson, has represented Labor, the Country Liberals and is currently a member of the Palmer United Party.

She used her speech to lash out at her former colleagues from all political persuasions.

"Let's start fighting, because these people, whether they're Coalition, whether they're Labor Party, they're not going to give us nothing," she said.

"They're always going to take, take, take from us."

Constitutional amendment misses the point, says organiser

One of the conference's organisers, Tasmanian activist and lawyer Michael Mansell, said the current talk of changing the constitution to recognise Indigenous people missed the point.

"Governments talking about constitutional recognition that creates no rights, imposes no obligations, is irrelevant to Aboriginal people around the country," he said.

"People are looking for security of tenure, land rights. People want their children to be educated not just in white education but also in Aboriginal history and Aboriginal culture.

"These are the things that are important to Aboriginal people."

Mr Mansell said the conference would try to establish an outlet for experienced Indigenous campaigners.

"We're trying to pull them back together so that an Aboriginal agenda can be raised at the national level and the federal government will have to repsond to it," he said.

"If we get that going at this summit it has the potential of raising issues like a treaty, self-determination, uniform land rights legislation, better protection of Aboriginal cultural heritage and so on."

He said there was a lot of frustration within the Indigenous community at the lack of representation on a national level.

"There's no doubt the cohesion of an Aboriginal political voice has been lost in the last decade particularly since ATSIC (The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission) was dumped by the Howard government," he said.

"We haven't found a way to replace ATSIC and what we're trying to do here is to say, well, look, this is not going to be a great big national body, but it's a forum for experienced Aboriginal politicians who know what the issues are and have the respect of the Aboriginal communities.

"By coming out with an agenda that reflects the needs and interests of Aboriginal communities, it will gain enormous support around the country, [which is] the one thing, of course, the federal government fears."