Blue Mud Bay: NLC welcomes historic Nitmiluk agreement between first nations peoples, fishing industry and government

Date: Jun 26, 2019

Publication Type: Media Releases

Subject: Water

For the first time since the Blue Mud Bay Decision by the High Court of Australia in 2008, a vision to resolve Blue Mud Bay has been realised in a Heads of Agreement signed today at the 120th Full Council meeting of the Northern Land Council at Nitmiluk near Katherine in the Northern Territory.

The NLC recognizes the five years of hard work by the NLC’s Sea Country Working Group Working along with the Northern Territory Government, the Amateur Fishermen’s Association of the NT, the NT Seafood Council, and the NT Guided Fishing Industry Association as key industry bodies.

 Most importantly, this work was done with and on behalf of the first nations people that have rights, interests and responsibilities along the more than 6,000 kilometres of Territory coastline.

It is timely that we celebrate this agreement on the eve of the 11th anniversary of the 2008 High Court decision in the case bought by the Blue Mud Bay traditional owners.

This is an historic day that shows that when first nations people are given the resources, support and recognition by government and industry we can reach agreement of very complex matters. For all traditional owners this is an example of Makarrata at work and we hope that government and the people of the NT will embrace our willingness to reach agreement for the benefit of all Territorians.