Power to our People
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Goolarabooloo and Jabirr Jabirr peoples celebrate decision to stop gas hub project
An emotional Phillip Roe has spoken of his joy at the news the Woodside-led consortium has decided to dump the James Price Point (Walmadany) gas hub proposal but he tempered his joy with the warning he believes the fight to save Country is not yet over.
“We are celebrating, we are overjoyed,” a tearful Mr Roe said. “We gave up so much of our time and fought a long battle.
“I gave up my job to save Country. I did it for my people, for my father’s legacy, for everything he taught us.”
The decision by the Woodside-led consortium to abandon the gas hub project is now likely to lead to another battle with the State’s Labor Party Opposition spokesman on Aboriginal Affair, Ben Wyatt demanding the State Government and Woodside honour the $1.5 billion package promised to the Traditional Owners of the area.
In the meantime the Goolarabooloo and Jabirr Jabirr people have celebrated the announcement about the gas hub although they remain suspicious the State Government will continue with a plan to industrialise the pristine Kimberley region.
Mr Roe said he would remain on guard against the Premier and the State Government and resume the fight for Country in the event attempts were made to build the port and to industrialise his peoples’ Country.
“I don’t know how Premier Barnett ever got to the highest office, he acts like a dictator,” Mr Roe said.
“We can’t trust people like that.” The port is on a separate compulsory acquisition notice, there are three acquisition notices all up, so just because Woodside will not proceed with the gas hub does not mean Premier Barnett will not push on with the port or keep trying to industrialise other parts of our Country.
“But for now we celebrate and we know it was the good fight from us all up here in the Kimberley, our peoples and our supporters, the locals, and others from afar who came together to do what’s right and stand together for this Country,” Mr Roe said.
The National Indigenous Times spoke with Mr Roe half an hour after Woodside publicly confirmed it was pulling out of the $40 billion liquefied natural gas hub precinct proposal at James Price Point, north of Broome on the north coast of Western Australia.