Australia

Indigenous groups slam 'pathetic, divisive' Hanson for land rights comments

0:00

Pauline Hanson thinks Indigenous people "milk" the issue of land rights and the One Nation Senator says it really annoys her.

Indigenous organisations have slammed One Nation leader Pauline Hanson for making "ridiculous" and "divisive" comments around land rights.

On Sunday, Ms Hanson blasted Indigenous groups for "milking" land rights claims. 

Senator Hanson told Sky News she gets upset when Australia is referred to as Aboriginal land, arguing "I didn't steal it".

"This is what's happened in the past, as happened throughout the world with many countries," she said.

Ms Hanson also called for "equality" so that Australians get government assistance based completely on individual needs, with cultural background not considered.

0:00
Indigenous land rights activist speaks with NITV News about the importance of land rights claims.
Indigenous land rights activist speaks with NITV News about the importance of land rights claims.

Rod Little, a co-chair of National Congress of Australia's First Peoples and a native title claimant, told SBS News on Monday Ms Hanson was "playing politics and trying to establish a divide".

"This steers people away from the facts ... It feels like going back to the 90s when there was an atmosphere of fear [of land rights claims]."

Mr Little said it was "pathetic" to talk about how she didn't steal the land herself and that it was "unhelpful" for discussion around the topic of land rights.

He said he was particularly unhappy with how Ms Hanson talked about equality "from a position of privilege".

"First Peoples have been calling for equality from day one." 

"We need to be discussing resolutions and solutions ... How do we work together to achieve real equality in this country," he said.

Rod Little has criticised Pauline Hanson.
Rod Little has criticised Pauline Hanson.
Facebook

While Peter Lewis, president of ANTaR, told SBS News the views are "unfortunate and "stripped of nuance".

"The many thousands of non-Indigenous Australians that support reconciliation and truth-telling don't share Pauline Hanson's fears and sense of threat."

He said a "mature nation" should be able to "confidently confront and acknowledge its past, and come together to build a better future".

"Frankly, it seems like Senator Hanson may have been missing the media's attention and this is a crude way of getting some spotlight back.

"It highlights even more the need to have a process of bringing out and talking about the truth of our shared history since colonisation began."

Stay up to date with SBS NEWS

  • App
  • Subscribe
  • Follow
  • Listen
  • Watch