• Members of the Wangkamahdla Applicant - Graeme Finn, Shirley Finn, Christine Doyle, Isabel Tarrago, Mona Aplin, Avelina Tarrago, Nathan Mahoney (Supplied: Queensland South Native Title Service)Source: Supplied: Queensland South Native Title Service
The determination recognises the rights of the Wangkamahdla people to more than 3 million hectares of Country.
15 Jul 2021 - 4:23 PM  UPDATED 15 Jul 2021 - 4:23 PM

Traditional owners are celebrating a Native Title ruling over a remote patch of outback Queensland, saying it will cement their unbroken bond with their homelands.

The Federal Court has formally recognised the Wangkamahdla People's rights under Native Title to more than 3 million hectares of land west and southwest of Boulia, not far from the Northern Territory border.

Wangkamahdla woman Mona Aplin travelled from Mount Isa to Brisbane for the determination, with the hearing held over video link due to COVID-19 restrictions.

"Recognition of our people as Native Title holders will not only change my life, but it will change the lives of my children and my children's children," she said.

The determination recognises the Wangkamahdla People's connection to a vast tract of land that takes in the town of Bedourie, extending west to the border, including the Cravens Peak nature reserve and part of the Munga-Thirri National Park.

Resources Minister Scott Stewart said the determination means the Wangkamahdla People can hunt, fish, gather, conduct ceremonies, teach and maintain places of importance on country.

"This native title declaration will ensure the traditions and values of the Wangkamahdla people are respected and preserved for future generations, upon the land they have walked for thousands of years," he said on Thursday.

He said Native Title was now recognised across almost 30 per cent of the state.

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