The Handover

Wednesday, 4 June 2014
Peo Ahmat
Charlotte Tamwoy
Manuel Nomoa

For those who may not be aware, Badu Island is situated in the Torres Strait and is one of the larger outer islands with a village population of approximately one thousand.

The Badu DOGIT (Deed of Grant in Trust) transfer process to a Badu Island nongovernment organisation started as far back as 2007 after the Queensland State Government proposed the amalgamation of the local Badu Island Council into a regional council. Our former Badu Island at Councillors at the time were unhappy any prospect of land matters on Badu Island being administered elsewhere. A legal battle ensued with the state for an NGO on Badu to hold the DOGIT.

A successful legal challenge compelled the state to follow this through, culminating in the transfer to Mura Badulgal (Torres Strait Islanders) Corporation RNTBC of the DOGIT, which is celebrated on 1 February 2014.

This six year journey involved an enormous effort from all stakeholders, including our people, through the lengthy statewide consultation process, the many meetings and teleconferences by Mura Badulgal directors. It was a commendable voluntary effort by all concerned to achieve the goal so richly deserved, that is, to be in full control of our Island homelands.