Some of the biggest and most powerful First Nations organisations have met in Canberra today to discuss a new engagement with Prime Minister Turnbull.
By
Myles Morgan

Source:
NITV News
17 Sep 2015 - 5:46 PM  UPDATED 17 Sep 2015 - 6:43 PM

TRANSCRIPT

Natalie Ahmat: Some of the biggest and most powerful First Nations organisations have met in Canberra today to discuss a new engagement with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

Our political reporter Myles Morgan tells us more.

Myles Morgan: A new Prime Minister, a new strategy for our peak organisations.

Tony Abbott over-promised and under-delivered as the self-appointed "Prime Minister for Indigenous Affairs".

National Congress is hoping for a new engagement with Prime Minister Turnbull.

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Les Malezer, National Congress of Australia's First Peoples: Statistics that are either worsening or not improving under Close the Gap policy.

So government essentially is in a process to failure with everything that it's doing in Aboriginal affairs unless there is a real, genuine commitment to let Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people design and deliver the services that our our people need. 

"This is not the white fulla looking after the black fullas. This is about having leadership and having representation in a more democratic parliament" 

Kirstie Parker, National Congress of Australia's First Peoples: Our communities and our members are the experts in this field. We know our communities, we know our issues and we know that we can work with a government that respects that. 

National Congress never had much luck in securing a formal meeting with Prime Minister Abbott.

They have been given an assurance from Prime Minister Turnbull's office that he is genuine in wanting to meet with them.

One of the most pressing questions will be what happens to Tony Abbott's prize policy: Constitutional recognition.

"We'll make sure they pay adequate attention to this issue if they want to meet those deadlines"

Kirstie Parker With every week that goes by the momentum slips. Having said that, any government that expresses or insists that it has a genuine interest in supporting and advancing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people's rights and aspirations, we'll make sure they pay adequate attention to this issue if they want to meet those deadlines.

And it's still unknown if a Ministerial shake up will see Nigel Scullion demoted, dumped or kept as Indigenous Affairs Minister.

Les Malezer: We don't need a chief protector so regardless of who the minister is, who the minister might be, we want a standard for the portfolio to be met. And that is really important and something that has been lacking since 1973 when the first federal minister for Aboriginal affairs began. That really, it has to be a different approach.

This is not the white fulla looking after the black fullas. This is about having leadership and having representation in a more democratic parliament. 

Myles Morgan, NITV News