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In this podcast series, Maratja Dhamarrandji and Richard Trudgen discuss who are considered the traditional owners of the land, but how there is a communication breakdown because most Yolngu do not understand the meaning of the English words ‘traditional’ or ‘landowner’.
Maratja Dhamarrandji asks Richard Trudgen, What is the meaning of evidence from a Balanda (mainstream) perspective? And why don't Yolŋu feel like they have security of tenure?
Rev. Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM and Richard Trudgen discuss the third Makarrata mediation process. This is a legal mediation process carried out when a treaty has been broken between two corporate clan groups. It is a process for dispute resolution around economic issues of trade, land or shared assets, rather than smaller family disputes.
Rev. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM tells Richard Trudgen about the time he surprised one hundred judges about how structured Yolŋu law is. They discuss how recognising and going back to Yolŋu common law would help everybody.
Maratja Dhamarrandji and Richard Trudgen discuss the ongoing confusion about who the real landowners are, and who are the TOs, as the Lands Council calls them, or the ‘Traditional Owners’. One of the big problems is mainstream Australians (Balanda) think Yolŋu law is just some little thing, rather than a very complex legal system full of its own witnesses, evidences and checks and balances. Even anthropologists, and some Yolŋu people themselves, do not understand the complexities of Yolŋu law, so they ask Balanda lawyers from Canberra, Sydney, Melbourne etc., to tell them who the traditional landowners are.
Rev. Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM discusses with Richard Trudgen about the Adjustment Movement on Elcho Island, back in 1957, and how is affecting Yolngu people now.
Maratja Dhamarrandji and Richard Trudgen talk about how Yolŋu people have lost their humanity, their respect for the law and for each other that used to be there when Yolŋu leaders applied the original Australian law. Richard talks about how only a few decades ago, Arnhem Land communities were among the safest in Australia. Now, with the loss of culture, identity and leadership, Yolŋu people are attacking each other, youths join gangs and there is more domestic violence and lawlessness than ever before.
Rev. Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM and Richard Trudgen continue to discuss the 1957 Adjustment movement on Elcho Island and how we can change it around now.
Maratja Dhamarrandji and Richard Trudgen discuss how Yolŋu are legally ‘restrained’ or protected under their system of Madayin rom, Yolŋu law. They discuss the stages in which Yolŋu learn about the law through initiation processes and discipline of their mind, body and soul, that continues right through their lives, starting from when they are very small children.
Maratja Dhamarrandji continues to question what is evidence from a Balanda law perspective. And shows Richard the checks and balances that already exist in Yolngu law.
Maratja Dhamarrandji tells Richard Trudgen it's the Balanda mainstream influence that is affecting Yolŋu understanding of law and order.
Rev. Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM and Richard Trudgen discuss customary law, democracy and dictatorship and how these apply to both Balanda and Yolngu systems of law.
Rev. Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM and Richard Trudgen discuss the importance of the Makarrata mediation process ending in a reconciliation ceremony in Yolŋu law and its similarities to the Balanda (mainstream) systems of law, where defendants go into police custody and face a trial if they have committed a crime.
In this podcast series, Maratja Dhamarrandji and Richard Trudgen discuss why Balanda (mainstream western Australians) do not recognise Yolngu law, its foundational source, array of evidence, and the many checks and balances that underpin it. One of the main problems leading to this marr-dhumbalyun, confusion, is language.
Rev. Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM and Richard Trudgen discuss the second Makarrata mediation process, ending in a reconciliation ceremony in Yolŋu law and why all people need to return to a way of peace.