Ah Mat in plea for no change to land laws

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - LOOKING BACK - Michael McKenna

CAPE York Abo­rig­i­nal lead­ers have at­tacked plans by Queens­land Premier An­nasta­cia Palaszczuk to crack down on land clear­ing, warn­ing that it will stop job-cre­ation projects and en­shrine fur­ther “so­cial and eco­nomic dis­ad­van­tage” in in­dige­nous com­mu­ni­ties.

Cape York Land Coun­cil chair­man Richie Ah Mat has urged key cross­benchers to block changes to the Veg­e­ta­tion Man­age­ment Act, to be de­bated in Queens­land’s hung par­lia­ment this week.

Mr Ah Mat has writ­ten to in­de­pen­dent MPs Rob Pyne and Pe­ter Welling­ton plead­ing with them to vote against the crack­down, say­ing land clear­ing is needed for in­dige­nous eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment on the penin­sula, es­ti­mated to be 98 per cent pris­tine.

The pro­posed leg­is­la­tion, which in­cludes a move to abol­ish the pre­vi­ous Lib­eral Na­tional Party gov­ern­ment per­mits for “high-value agri­cul­ture’’, is seen as a pitch for crit­i­cal Greens pref­er­ences in in­ner-Bris­bane seats at the next state elec­tion.

Farm­ers’ lobby group AgForce, Kat­ter’s Aus­tralia Party, the LNP, north Queens­land may­ors and in­dige­nous lead­ers have come out strongly against La­bor’s pro­posed land-clear­ing laws, which are be­ing changed for the third time in seven years.

De­bate on the bill was ex­pected to be­gin in par­lia­ment last night, with the LNP and La­bor each hold­ing 42 votes, KAP two and in­de­pen­dents three.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.