Indigenous affairs funding diverted to lobby groups opposed to native title


The Coalition’s then Minister for Indigenous Affairs diverted funds intended to advantage the Indigenous away to lobby groups opposed to native title land claims. Part of that funding was then to cover legal fees to quash native title claims.

Nigel Scullion used money earmarked for alleviating Indigenous disadvantage to fund a fishing industry lobby group he used to chair. He approved a grant of $150,000 to the Northern Territory Seafood Council so it could argue how it would be negatively affected by land claims – claims he opposed during his time in the role.

He also approved grants of $170,000 to the NT amateur fishermen’s association and $165,000 to the NT Cattlemen’s Association for “legal fees”. The half a million dollars in grants came from the Indigenous advancement strategy (IAS) culture and capability division, which is supposed to fund “Indigenous cultural expression and conservation” and “participation in the social and economic life of Australia”.

The grants to the fishing and cattlemen’s groups in the Northern Territory will go towards legal fees for the groups to argue how they might be negatively impacted by land rights claims, Scullion told a Senate estimates hearing.

Labor Senator Malarndirri McCarthy said the minister treated the Indigenous advancement strategy as “his slush fund”.

Read more.

The Case for a Federal ICAC
Q.E.D. Home Next rort

More Q.E.D.

Regional infrastructure grants program targets Coalition seats

The program, administered by Deputy PM Michael McCormack, awarded 94% of its grants to electorates held or targeted by the Coalition in the months leading up to the 2019 federal election.

80% of fund for female sports goes to Coalition seats

On the eve of the 2019 election, the Prime Minister announced a $150m fund for female change rooms and swimming pools. Two marginal Liberal-held seats received 40% ($60m) of the funding.

McCormack breaches lobbying code to award $2.6m airport grant

Deputy prime minister Michael McCormack struck a pre-election deal with an unregistered political lobbyist and former Howard Government adviser for a $2.6 million airport upgrade ahead of the launch of the Regional Airports Program.

Community development grants a $2.5 billion slush fund

Officially, the scheme funds “critical” projects. Unofficially, it is one giant slush fund for the Coalition to pork-barrel its way through another two election campaigns at a cost of more than $2.5 billion.

Don’t pay so you can read it.
Pay so everyone can.

Become a supporter

More ways
to connect

Subscribe to Newsletter

Get Our Weekly Newsletter. Unsubscribe anytime.

Thank you! We'll also confirm via email.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This