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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage

24 September 1999

JABILUKA APPOINTMENT


Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill has appointed Adelaide lawyer Alistair (Bardy) McFarlane to report on an application by the Mirrar people for protection of the Boiwek site under section 10 of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Heritage Protection Act.

Mr McFarlane, a partner of prominent Adelaide legal firm Piper Alderman, has extensive experience in native title issues, particularly in the negotiation of land use agreements, coupled with a strong background in environmental law.

A departmental officer from Environment Australia will assist Mr McFarlane as directed and will liaise with the relevant parties on the process to be undertaken in compiling the section 10 report. This work will help address concerns about access to the Mirrar people and cultural sensitivities about the reporting process.

Advertisements will be placed this weekend calling for submissions on the application from interested parties. Submissions will close on October 22.

The Government remains committed to an on-going dialogue with the Mirrar people over their concerns relating to the Jabiluka mining lease. It looks forward to progressing the section 10 application and other issues relating to Jabiluka in a cooperative and constructive manner.

Media contact - Matt Brown on 0419 693 515.

Commonwealth of Australia