Aborigines protest Invasion Day
BY BRONWEN BEECHEY
ADELAIDE — More than 80 people attended a speakout and candlelight vigil to mark Invasion Day on January 26. The meeting was held outside Government House, on what has become known to Aboriginal activists as Genocide Corner, after a camp protesting the activities of Western Mining at Lake Eyre was forcibly removed by police in January 1999.
Georgina Williams welcomed the audience on behalf of the Kaurna people, the traditional owners of the land on which Adelaide stands. Williams drew attention to the campaign against the building of an Ansett call centre at Warraparinga, a significant Aboriginal site near Flinders University. "John Howard says he can't apologise for what happened yesterday, but what's happening at Warraparinga shows that yesterday is still going on today", she said.
The gathering was addressed by Tom Trevorrow and Matt Rigney from the Ngarrindjeri people, who spoke on the struggle against the building of a bridge to Kumarangk (Hindmarsh Island). The bridge is almost complete.
The Ngarrindjeri people are calling on the South Australian government to provide a ferry service to the island, as they will not travel on the bridge. In a stunning display of insensitivity, the Goolwa Council has invited the Ngarrindjeri to participate in the opening ceremony for the bridge.
The speakout's organisers plan to rally at Genocide Corner (corner of King William Street and North Terrace) at 7pm on the first Friday of every month to publicise Aboriginal demands.