Native title claim approved for SA west coast
A native title claim covering more than 5000 square kilometres on South Australia’s western Eyre Peninsula has been finalised, recognising the traditional rights of the Wirangu people.
Streaky Bay. Photo supplied.
The Federal Court approved the claim on Thursday, marking an end to proceedings that began more than 25 years ago.
The ruling was delivered by Justice Natalie Charlesworth on country at Streaky Bay.
Through an Indigenous Land Use Agreement, the state government and the Wirangu people have established how native title rights can co-exist with other rights on the land and how the state will engage with the Wirangu on future activities.
“This piece of land is a remarkable part of our state, boasting high cliffs, accessible beaches and a vast interior,” South Australian Attorney-General Kyam Maher said.
“I’m pleased that the state has been able to work with the Wirangu people to reach this settlement, which acknowledges their enduring connection to the land and waters, and celebrates both its heritage and its future.”
This consent determination recognises that the Wirangu people have continued to maintain their traditional connection to the region and their spiritual relationship with it.
Maher said the determination was also a significant step in reconciliation of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians and in developing mutual respect.
“It is a testimony to the perseverance of Aboriginal culture, the oldest living one on earth,” he said.