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Native title group: losing a battle but winning the war?

 

UPDATED: Still working on ORIC compliance order.

 

Alice Springs native title holders determined to reform their organisation, Lhere Artepe Aboriginal Corporation (LAAC), say they may have lost a battle at last week's annual general meeting but they are starting to win the war.

Brian Stirling was re-elected chairman – by just one vote – but the seven hour meeting set in motion a string of measures to get clarity about the multi-million dollar investments, in supermarkets and real estate, by entities linked to Lhere Artepe.
The 2010/11 financial report tabled revealed LAAC assets totaling $678,000 in the form of loans to related commercial entities, including $282,000 to LAE Discretionary Trust, understood to be associated with the Mt Johns real estate development, and Lhere Artepe Enterprises ($390,000).
LAAC itself had a loss of $317,000, up from $74,000 last year.

LAAC has now complied the majority of the 20 requirements of a compliance notice issued by ORIC earlier this year and "the outstanding matters should be finalised before the end of November or early December 2011," the meeting was told.

It became clear that the power of "contract" CEO Darryl Pearce will be curtailed and that he will need to corroborate his responses to queries from members with "paperwork". This information comes from a key member of the reform group, Janice Harris (pictured), now a director of Lhere Artepe. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. Pictured at top: Today's Lhere Artepe website – its redevelopment is "due for completion in early 2011 [sic]".

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