The Special Administration of the Central Australian Aboriginal Alcohol Program Unit may have created a template for blocking family and clan empire building in taxpayer funded organisations. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. PHOTO: CAAAPU client getting woodworking training.
Claims that the Federal Government wants to close some communities in the NT are wrong and nothing more than deliberate scare-mongering, writes Nigel Scullion, Minister for Indigenous Affairs (pictured).
Territory and Federal Labor should stop playing games with road funding and the lives of Territorians. In the past 24 hours we have witnessed a lack of respect and money for supporting safe highways in the Northern Territory from Labor. Federal Minister Anthony Albanese knows full well that his dying Labor Government has provided not one single dollar for national highway upgrades in the Territory for the next five years, writes Adam Giles, NT Chief Minister.
UPDATE Aug 21: Comprehensive comment below by Councillor Steve Brown.
A massive complex welcoming young people of all races, those on the edge of the law and those who are not, in the centre of the town, possibly the defunct Memo Club or on the still vacant Melanka site, is a proposal Councillor Steve Brown will be putting before the town council.
"We need to reduce the us and them thing," he says.
The project would cost $30m to $40m and require funding from the Federal and NT Governments.
Discovering the "underlying drivers of problems to achieve long term systemic change".
"Creating new ways for Aborigines and others to work together."
"Building capacity and innovating new approaches."
It's all part of an impressive agenda, but will Desert Knowledge Australia (DKA) get its hands dirty and apply its objectives on the ground, where they are most desperately needed, right on its doorstep, here in Alice Springs?
That would, of course, require naming names – elected people not doing their job, highly funded yet inadequate or corrupt NGOs, incompetent government departments. Will DKA have the bottle?
On the day this week when the Alice Springs News Online spoke to CEO John Huigen about DKA's long-term plans we also visited Hidden Valley, one of Alice Springs' notorious town camps: there have been two recent attacks on police, with rocks and sticks; there was a stabbing killing late last year; camp dogs were eating people in 2008. Alcohol abuse is rife although its use is prohibited.
As we were talking to prominent camp dwellers Mark Lockyer and Patrick Nandy (pictured) in one house about overcrowding and unwelcome visitors, next-door police were taking away in handcuffs a man suspected of sexual assault.
Yet in that same camp is a "cluster" – a concept of which DKA is very fond – of people whom most would consider to be leading normal lives. By ERWIN CHLANDA with additional reporting by KIERAN FINNANE.
PHOTO: Patrick Nandy outside his mother-in-law's new house in Hidden Valley.