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Dixon on behalf of the Narrwan and Badpa Estate Groups v Northern Territory of Australia [2020] FCA 1545

Category: Agreement
Binomial Name: Federal Court of Australia
Date: 29 October 2020
Sub Category:Consent Determination (Native Title Act)
Place:

Sturt Plateau Pastoral District

State/Country:Northern Territory , Australia
The area consists of approximately 2,802 square kilometres located southwest of Daly Waters. For a detailed description of the area and maps see Schedule C of the determination, attached below under documents. The area is within the jurisdiction of the Roper Gulf Shire.
Legal Status:

Registered with the National Native Title Tribunal on the Native Title Register.

Legal Reference: Federal Court file no.: NTD25/2015; National Native Title Tribunal file no.: DCD2020/009
Subject Matter:Native Title | Recognition of Native Title or Traditional Ownership
URL: https://www.austlii.edu.au/cgi-bin/viewdoc/au/cases/cth/FCA/2020/1545.html
Summary Information:

Between: Raymond Dixon, Johnny Devlin, Jeremy Jackson (Applicant) and the Northern Territory of Australia (Respondent)

Judge: White J

Determination

Native title exists in parts of the determination area

It consists of non-exclusive native title rights and interests.

Native title holders

Native title is held by members of the Narrwan and Badpa Estate Groups who are patrilineal descendants (including by adoption) of a Narwrwan or Badpa Estate Group member, or persons who have otherwise been incorporated as a member of the Estate Groups in accordance with their laws and customs. For a detailed description of the Estate Group members see the extract of the determination attached below under documents.

In accordance with the traditional law and custom of the Narrwan and Badpa Estate groups, members of neighbouring estates and their spouses have native title rights subject to those of the Narrwan and Badpa Estate Group members'. For a detailed description of the neighbouring Estate Group members see the extract of the determination attached below under documents.

Non-exclusive native title rights and interests over part of the determination area

These rights exist over the area described in Schedule C and include the right to:

  • have access to, remain on and use the determination area;
  • access and take resources on the determination area; 
  • protect places, areas and things of traditional significance.

Rights held by neighbouring Estate Group members and their spouses include:

  • have access to, remain on and use the determination area; and
  • access resources on the determination area.

Native title does not exist over minerals as defined in the Minerals (Acquisition) Act 1953 (NT), petroleum as defined in the Petroleum Act 1984 (NT), or prescribed substances as defined in the Atomic Energy (Control of Materials) Act 1946 (Cth).

Other rights and interests in the determination area include:

  • rights and interests of the holder of Pastoral Lease No. 936;
  • interests of AustralAsia Railway Corporation under Crown CUFT 754/366;
  • rights and interests of Telstra Corporation Limited under statute including inspecting land, operating telecommunications facilities, maintaining and repairing those facilities and the right for its agents to access facilities in performing their duties;
  • rights of Aboriginal persons (including non-native title holders) in Pastoral Lease No. 936 made by s 38 of the Pastoral Land Act 1992 (NT);
  • rights of Aboriginal persons pursuant to the Northern Territory Aboriginal Sacred Sites Act 1989 (NT);
  • rights of access by an employee, servant, agent or instrumentality of the Northern Territory or Commonwealth, or a statutory authority as required in the performance of statutory duties;
  • rights to water lawfully captured by the holders of other interests; 
  • rights and interests of persons granted by Crown by statute or exercise of executive power; and
  • rights and interests granted under the Petroleum Act 1984 (NT) as depicted in Schedule E.

See the extract of the determination for further information about the non-native title rights and interests. 

In the case of conflict, the exercise of non-native title rights and interests will prevail over the non-exclusive native title.

The Top End Aboriginal Corporation Registered Native Title Body Corporate (RNTBC) is the prescribed body corporate. It performs the functions required under the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) and acts as agent for the Narrwan and Badpa Estate Groups.

Full text of the determination is available via the URL link above.

Detailed Information:

Background

The original Hidden Valley Pastoral Lease application was made on 25 May 2015 [1]. The Buchanan Downs Pastoral Lease application was filed on the same day, and the two travelled through the court together as part of a group of applications [2].

The hearings occurred simultaneously and were determined similarly [3].

Details of Judgment

The Court determined that it was within the Court's power to give effect to the parties' agreement to recognise the Narrwan and Badpa Estate Group's native title over part of the determination area.

Response

Applicant Jeremy Jackson described the determination as inspiring sadness and pride. Sadness due to the number of elders who passed away prior to determination, and pride in its importance to younger generations [NLC].

Outcomes:

Native title exists in parts of the determination area.


Related Entries

Agreement
  • Dixon on behalf of the Narrwan, Ngayirrirni and Kinbininggu Estate Groups v Northern Territory of Australia [2020] 1544 FCA
  • Organisation
  • National Native Title Tribunal
  • Northern Territory of Australia - Respondent
  • Roper Gulf Shire Council
  • AustralAsia Railway Corporation
  • Telstra Corporation Limited
  • Top End (Default PBC/CLA) Aboriginal Corporations RNTBC
  • Legislation
  • Native Title Act 1993 (Cth)
  • Native Title Amendment Act 1998 (Cth)
  • Native Title (Indigenous Land Use Agreements) Regulations 1999 (Cth)
  • Minerals (Acquisition) Act (NT)
  • Petroleum Act 1984 (NT)
  • Atomic Energy (Control of Materials) Act 1946 (Cth)
  • Pastoral Land Act 1992 (NT)
  • Northern Territory Aboriginal Sacred Sites Act 1989 (NT)

  • References

    Media Release
    Northern Land Council (30 October 2020) Media Release

    Documents

    Document
    Extract from the National Native Title Register for DCD2020/009 as at 27/08/2021 (Hidden Valley). - ( PDF | PDF | PDF | PDF | PDF | PDF)

    Glossary

    Native Title (Australia) | National Native Title Tribunal (NNTT) (Australia) | Native Title Registers | Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (Australia) | Applicant | Respondent | Consent Determination (Native Title Act 1993 (Cth)) (Australia) | Aboriginal Corporation (Australia) | Native Title Applicants | Native Title Holders (Native Title Act 1993 (Cth)) (Australia) | Native Title Representative Body (NTRB) (Australia)

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