Alice Springs traditional owners demand a greater say

The Registrar of Indigenous Corporations, Anthony Beven, has today placed four corporations in Alice Springs under special administration: Lhere Artepe Aboriginal Corporation RNTBC, Antulye Aboriginal Corporation, Mparntwe Aboriginal Corporation and Irlpme Aboriginal Corporation. Each of the special administrations will run until 31 May 2014.

The directors of each of the four corporations approached the Registrar and requested him to place their corporations under special administration.

The Lhere Artepe Aboriginal Corporation RNTBC is the body that holds and represents the native title interests of the Central Arrernte people. It was established after the Federal Court of Australia, on 23 May 2000, recognised the native title rights of the Central Arrernte people over Alice Springs.

The Antulye Aboriginal Corporation, Mparntwe Aboriginal Corporation and Irlpme Aboriginal Corporation were registered in 2005. They were established to represent the three estate groups or clans of the Central Arrernte people.

In a complicated structure of trusts and subsidiary companies the Central Arrernte people have interests in a number of businesses, including the Yeperenye Shopping Centre in Alice Springs, three IGA stores located around Alice Springs and civil works and property development activities.

For several years now the traditional owners of Alice Springs have been frustrated about the loss of control over their traditional lands―something they fought for and thought they had won in May 2000. They have also sought greater transparency in decisions that are made in their name.

The traditional owners are anxious to realise the vision set by their elders―to improve the lives of Central Arrernte people. The special administration process will enable the focus to return to that vision.

‘In recent years my office has worked with the corporations to address the concerns of traditional owners. But dealing with the complexity of the structures and internal governance requirements have worn down the directors, members and staff,’ said Mr Beven. ‘The directors came together and requested outside assistance, and I commend them for doing so.’

Mr Beven has appointed Mr Gerry Mier and Mr Tony Jonsson from the Cairns-based firm KPMG as the joint and several special administrators of the four corporations.

Media contact

Patricia Gibson
(02) 6146 4743
ORIC MR1314-16
9 December 2013

Special administrators

Gerry Mier and Tony Jonsson
(07) 4046 8888