Traditional owner says waste dump will claim landowner’s soul

The NLC’s chief executive, Norman Fry, says that money is vital for people in an area that he says has been neglected by the Territory Government.

"The Territory Government has played politics with this," he said.

"Really it should have got on board a long time ago because most uranium mining in Australia is going to take place here in the Northern Territory."


But a traditional owner of another site under consideration for a nuclear waste dump has questioned whether all residents of Muckaty Station agree with the nomination.

Kathleen Martin from Mount Everard, north-west of Alice Springs, says there was some division over the proposal in the community.

"I’m asking, was that in agreeance with everybody on Muckaty?" she said

"Because the message that came down a couple of weeks ago was that the older people – the older men – had told some of the people there, you sell the land, you sell your soul."

Natalie Wasley from the Arid Lands Environement Centre, who has been campaigning against all of the sites proposed, says many of the traditional owners do not support the proposal.

"I’ve spoken with a Ngapa elder this morning, Bindi Martin from the Muckaty area, and he said he still has strong opposition to the dump proposal," she said.

"I believe this is a view held by other elders as well.

"I think the Science Minister Julie Bishop will have a hard time showing that there is consent within the Ngapa group let alone the whole Muckaty community for this nomination for the waste dump."

The Northern Land Council says it has all 70 traditional owners’ support.

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