Kabi Kabi win the title fight

Formal recognition confirmed by courts

AFTER nearly two decades, the Kabi Kabi People have secured formal recognition as Native Title Holders over approximately 365,345 hectares of land and waters on their traditional Country on the Sunshine Coast. In the decision handed down this week by the Honourable Justice Collier of the Federal Court of Australia, Part A of the Kabi Kabi native title claim extends in the south from Elimbah Creek catchment area, Sandstone Point and Bribie Island, north to Cooloola National Park, Curra State Forest, Mary River, and the Isis River. In the east from lowest astronomical tide of the coastline west to Nambour, Jimna and the Burnett and Coast Ranges.
The determination area includes Gympie, Noosa, Maroochydore, Caloundra, Bribie Island and Mudjimba Island.
Since their first claim for native title back in 2006, today’s outcome for the Kabi Kabi People means, “stability and grounding to build the Kabi Kabi Nation to where it should be,” Kabi Kabi Traditional Owner, Norman Bond said.
“It means the Kabi Kabi People can be formally recognised by all tiers of government and by the public without feeling they (Kabi Kabi People) have to justify who they are, because the native title claim process was not complete.”
The Kabi Kabi People now hold non-exclusive native title rights over their traditional Country meaning they have the right to hunt and camp on Country.
Non-exclusive rights do not prevent non-Indigenous people from using the land if they also have a legal interest to that land.
Similar native title rights have been recognised over a large portion of Queensland, including Winton, Gladstone, Bundaberg and Rockhampton.
The recognised rights provide an opportunity for the Kabi Kabi People to work together with stakeholders to ensure that all those that enjoy Kabi Kabi Country can do so in a respectful way, the Queensland South Native Title Services wrote in a statement.
Of particular significance granted is the right to, “take resources from the area for any purpose” which is the first to be recognised in south-east Queensland.
Prior to this determination, the right has been confined to personal, communal and non-commercial purposes.
In extending his congratulations to the Kabi Kabi Native Title Holders, QSNTS’ CEO, Tim Wishart said: ”Today’s determination marks a significant milestone for the Kabi Kabi People in being recognised as the traditional occupiers of the land and waters in the area.”