Traditional Owners from Aurukun on the western side of Cape York say they are angry after the weekend's announcement of who will mine their country.
Danny Teece-Johnson

17 Aug 2015 - 4:49 PM  UPDATED 18 Aug 2015 - 1:45 PM


Danny Teece-Johnson: On Saturday, Queensland Minister for State Developement Anthony Lynham gave Swiss multi-national Glencore the go ahead to mine bauxite at Cape York.

The Ngan Aak-Kunch Aboriginal Corporation, or NAK, represents owners of the rich bauxite deposits near Aurukun.

They say they are bitterly disappointed and saddened that the government has stripped them of their rights to decide who mines their land.

For the Traditional Owners, it's a grim history repeating itself. In 1978, Russ Hinze, a corrupt minister in the Joh Bjelke Petersen government, gave French aluminium multi-national Pechiney the right to mine.

Now QLD Labor has handed the wealth to Swiss company Glencore.

It was not only the decision itself but the way they were told.

The so-called 'open meeting' initially denied access to members of the prescribed body corporate, which represents the Native Title holders, their legal team and Cape York Land Council Chairman, Richie Ah Mat.

NAK director llyle Kawanggka said the whole process was farcical.

Traditional owners claim that in the lead up to the decision, the state government engaged lobbyists to do the bidding of the Glencore deal, as opposed to a joint venture part owned by the WIK people themselves.