Yolngu leaders declare sovereignty to Prince Charles, request his help
Leaders of the Yolŋu clans of the Northern Territory have asked visiting Prince Charles to intervene with the Australian government to recognise their never ceded sovereignty and help smooth the way to treaties with Aboriginal nations.
9 April 18 - Today the Member for Nhulunbuy, Yingiya Mark Guyula (pictured), and many Yolŋu clan leaders (convened by Dennis Wanambi and Waka Mununggurr) met with His Royal Highness Prince Charles at the Buku – Larrŋgay Mulka Centre in Yirrkala. The Member for Nhulunbuy made the following declaration:
“This here is Yolngu Land, we are sovereign people and we live by Yolngu law.
We have many difficulties with the Australian Governments because they do not recognise our sovereignty. We need to correct this situation, for the sake of our children and their children, for our cultural survival, – for our ancestors. We are the oldest living culture in the world.
I request, on behalf of the people standing before you, and the Yolngu nations that you intervene on our behalf and take a strong position to acknowledge our sovereignty and promote a pathway to Treaty.
We are the only indigenous people of a Commonwealth country that does not have the respect or dignity of a Treaty with our people. Will you advocate on our behalf for our justice?
Please accept this letter stick (pictured) and create a diplomatic passage for this letter stick from your highly respected position to the Prime Minister of Australia, in order to help our sovereign nations reach Treaty.”
Prince Charles graciously accepted the letter stick.
Media Contact: Beth Harris 0458755141