Indigenous leaders have today announced they will continue to prosecute their case against Australian energy company Santos to renegotiate the terms of its compensation package under its Indigenous Land Use Agreement (ILUA) or face a serious backlash and possible further action against their domestic operations. Gurang leader Shayne Blackman said the Company’s proposed Native Title recompense deal under its multibillion-dollar Gladstone Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) project fell well short of Indigenous and non-Indigenous people’s expectations and amounted to economic rape and Native Title plunder. “What we have is a Company that will reap in the order of $60 billion in revenue over a 40 year period with its 3-4 million tonnes per annum LNG processing train and associated infrastructure while offering the equivalent of beads and mirrors for its impacts on Native Title lands – those days are over” Mr. Blackman said. ‘Santos has a unique opportunity to demonstrate its corporate social responsibility to a triple bottom line – people, planet and profit but regrettably appears to be only interested in profit at the great expense of people and I would urge its shareholders to investigate and consider this injustice and fact. “While many would say energy and mining companies loosely translate the notion of fairness for just recompense, the Gurang people are prepared to give Santos the benefit of the doubt in future talks as they seek to work collaboratively with the Company. “Santos has a valuable opportunity to help Close the Gap by providing a package sufficient to not only provide real training, real jobs and ultimately a better community for Indigenous people but one that responds to Indigenous people’s vision for the region, and that extends well beyond basic tokenism measures. “Traditional land owners have a right to know and a moral obligation to respond to any inequality that is to befall their lands and the people on it, as the opportunity cost to land disfigurement and a disruption to their traditional laws and customs is too great. “Owners will be seeking a negotiated outcome with Santos and urge the Company to heed the call of Indigenous and non-Indigenous people who are prepared to pursue whatever avenue necessary to seek fairness and justice for the First People’s of this nation” said Mr. Blackman.

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