Written by J.L.Ruston.
For the first time in Australia’s white history, the government has welcomed the voices of the first nations people into parliament before a crowd of more than 5000 South Australians, proudly waving the indigenous flag in celebration of the long awaited societal step forwards and what premier Peter Malinauskas describes as ‘the most powerful show of respect towards Australia’s first nations people.’
The new legislation will see six regions to be established across the SA state each with newly elected representatives. Two members from each of those groups will go on to form the states First First Nations Voice which will be able to allow the community to directly address both house and state parliament in the interest of indigenous people.
With still a lot of formalities to iron out, the bill which was passed through the Labour government took place publicly outside of Adelaide’s parliament house and was passed through both the upper and lower house without either opposed, making SA the first Australian state to do so. The day brought rain which was wonderfully accepted by the masses of waving Indigenous and Torres state flags. “It’ll wash away any negative emotions” Kaurna and Ngarrindjeri elder Uncle Moogy encouraged joyfully for the occasion.
Premier Malinauskas acknowledged a ‘remarkable Australian tragedy’ that the one group of people left most behind for the past 200 years were the people who, for more than 65,000 years, had provided “great care and custodianship for the land we stand on today. For as long as Aboriginal Australia is excluded in sharing in our nation’s prosperity we carry an injustice that weighs on us all,” He continued and continued to appreciate how grateful he was to have a team that was committed to his inclusivity goals and kept their promise to parliament when other governments have notoriously failed.
“There are no more powerful deeds than South Australia becoming the first place in our nation to pass a law enshrining an Indigenous voice to our parliament. Who knows how we might benefit from drawing on 65,000 years of wisdom.
I firmly believe that there are more than a few things that this parliament can learn from the longest-living continuous culture that the world has ever seen.”
Exciting times lay ahead as the fruitful thoughts of reconciliation and alliance flood the nation. Dale Agius who is South Australia’s commissioner for First Nations Voice said, “For too long our voices have been excluded or dismissed. From today we have the right to be heard, at the highest level of decision-making in this state. After today, more than ever, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in South Australia will be able to have their say on the decisions that affect their lives and more importantly, they will have the chance to share with the parliament and the government their aspirations for the future. This is about generational change, to be included and to be heard.”
The energy of adamance and triumph for the Indigenous peoples of Australia rings through the air as celebrations
Kaylene Dyinawili Wombat, a supporter for the bill, paid respects to how hard her ancestors worked to make this day possible.
“Obviously a historical moment for us as Aboriginal Australians to finally come to this place which we probably couldn’t see back in history. It’s probably something that we never thought would happen and that’s because of our legacy of our trailblazers. The fire and passion of all of our leaders today that have actually worked very hard to work towards the occasion right here today is just so special.
“It’s so emotional I think because we look at the people that also aren’t here with us – our family and our elders that have passed on and never lived to see this special occasion. So their fire sort of burns brightly within our hearts.”
Which Auusie state do you think will be next?!