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Aborigines plan to set up tent embassy in Dayman Park

Hervey Bay Butchulla people gathered at Dayman Park to discuss future protests against the Moolyyir Creek development. Elders Uncle Mackie (Malcolm Burns) and Aunty Frances Gala talk with protest organiser Samala Cronin.
Hervey Bay Butchulla people gathered at Dayman Park to discuss future protests against the Moolyyir Creek development. Elders Uncle Mackie (Malcolm Burns) and Aunty Frances Gala talk with protest organiser Samala Cronin. Valerie Horton

THE region's first indigenous tent embassy will be erected in Dayman Park as indigenous members of the Fraser Coast push for recognition of their land, elders claim.

It's not known when the embassy will be set up at the popular park but Butchulla elder Aunty Joyce Smith confirmed she had given the green light for it to be built.

Members of the Butchulla family gathered at Dayman Park on Monday afternoon to protest the development of sacred ground at Moolyyir Creek.

Late on Monday afternoon, men, women and children gathered only blocks away from a digger excavating the Moolyyir Creek site on Pulgul St.

Protest organiser Samala Cronin said the Moolyyir Creek development should not have gone ahead.

"My great great great grandmother is buried there," she said.

"That land is rich in cultural significance."

Ms Cronin said the indigenous issues plaguing society couldn't continue.

"This land has never been bought or sold, it's just been taken," she said.

"We need to assert our sovereignty as traditional owners.

"We have more right to this country and we have more right to this land - we need to take back that crown land."

Last Saturday, Aunty Joyce said she was worried artefacts buried at the creek such as axes and graves would be damaged as 25 homes were built.

She said permission was given to the region's indigenous community to consider building the tent embassy in protest.

"Because that is Butchulla county," she said.

"It always has been and it always will."

The development's project manager of Moolyyir Creek declined to comment.

Topics:  aboriginal dayman park hervey bay indigenous land rights tent embassy urangan



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