Mbantua Festival funds not acquitted – government


Public funds for the Mbantua Festival have not been properly acquitted, the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet stated this afternoon.
The Federal Government gave the Arrulka Business Aboriginal Corporation grants totaling a $1.3m.
A spokesman for the department said: “We can confirm Arrulka has not provided the Department with an acquittal report that meets the requirements of the corporation’s funding agreement.
“Arrulka has been asked to resubmit an acquittal report that meets its obligations under its funding agreement.
“The onus is on Arrulka to meet the requirements stipulated in its funding agreement,” the statement says. It was issued after Arrulka director Neville Perkins claimed yesterday in a statement to the Alice Springs News Online: “We have done our acquittal report, and we have complied with the grant conditions.”
The News is seeking comment from Mr Perkins and his co-director and daughter Krystal Perkins (centre of the photo, pictured in the All the Perks office in 2010 with her cousin Jenny Perkins, photo from our archive).


  1. And the kids who worked so hard through long, long hours of rehearsals to make the dramatic performance at the old Bungalow so inspiring got nothing but applause.
    I admit to a particular interest here, two of my grandsons were in the cast. I am also happy to add that I haven’t heard any of the kids complain.
    However, as a proud and doting grandfather, I would have liked to see their efforts rewarded with at least a gesture of some sort. All agreed that their performance was stellar, I know an awful lot of long, hard work went into it.
    I would have thought that a small part of the large budget could have gone to them to show them a little appreciation for their efforts.
    The money went somewhere but it didn’t go to a lot of people who were contracted to do a lot of the work and it sure didn’t go to the kids. In future I would like to see our kids taught in a practical way that hard work should be rewarded.

  2. I write because I disagree with Dave Price article posted March 14,2014.
    I have had the privilege to grow up with Neville Perkins. I don’t normally write about something but I believe in this article it is unfair for certain section of the community to create an atmosphere of uncertainty of whether “Public funds for the Mbantua Festival have not been properly acquitted”.
    My relationship with Neville is from childhood, my musical mind and playing musical instruments has been the impetus of the relationship, but our friendship existed because of a level of trust and respect.
    Unfortunately our society has let down and betrayed the Aboriginal people in Australia they have suffered a lot of pain, hurt and confusion.
    It certainly is emotionally upsetting and draining to them when accusations are made. Some Aboriginal people never recover from that and it ultimately leads to the breakdown of their life and commutations with others.
    Others hang in there and work it through over a long period of time with the little help of government assistance. Rebuilding the trust in a relationship with Aboriginal people after being accused of not properly acquitted funds can be a daunting prospect, and would need a commitment to the a better relationship with Aboriginal people from all of us in Alice Springs and the Aboriginal people themselves.
    I know Neville is one of the Aboriginal people who would have worked so hard with the kids to help them achieve something in their life. Neville is experienced in this field and I am sure the public funds for the Mbantua Festival were properly managed, for the benefit of the Aboriginal people.
    I hope he continues to get government support to help the Aboriginal people in Alice Springs in the future.

  3. Re: Dave Price
    While a lot of people may be after recognition of their efforts for the festival, yourself included, my only hope is that the Mbantua festival – or a similar model, is run as an annual or bi-annual event to celebrate Aboriginal culture and contribution to our community. It is a “win” that this community desperately needs in the face of constant negativity.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here