Almost 1000 people from a number of Aboriginal groups from Yamatji country in Western Australia’s Mid-West region turn out to vote on a native title claim for land covering 48,000 square kilometres.
On Sunday, the claimants from the Yamatji Nation, Southern Yamatji, Hutt River, Mullewa Wadjari and Widi Mob, were in Geraldton, 413 kilometres north of Perth, for a meeting to decide the fate of the Yamatji Nation's Indigenous Land Use Agreement.
According to the government, it is one of the most successful authorisation meetings to take place in WA with more than 500 people voting 'Yes'.
It’s anticipated that the Agreement will be enacted in early February, then submitted to the National Native Title Tribunal for registration.
State Aboriginal Affairs Minister and Treasurer, Ben Wyatt said it was a privilege to attend the meeting.
“The benefits package focuses heavily on economic development and economic independence for the Yamatji claimants,” Minister Wyatt said in a statement.
“They will be well-placed to achieve economic independence in the coming years,” he said.
The Traditional Owner Negotiating Team, its legal advisors and State Government representatives were on hand to answer questions and to ensure that the claimants understood their commitments under the Agreement, and those of the State Government.