tip off


My first Crikey piece. “Tony Jones has a big night out in Darwin”

It was slap-bang in the middle of the build-up in late October 2006 and I’d just moved back to Darwin after living down south for five years. I was camping at the late Andrew McMillan’s bunker in Westralia Street, Stuart Park, a Darwin suburb close-handy to town. McMillan had been out on the town the night before stumbled in, somewhat shickered, in the early hours, cursing as he tripped over my sweaty, sleeping self on the floor and muttering something about a lively stoush at the Northern Territory Media Awards.

I rolled back into my fartsack for a few hours kip until woken by Andrew at an unusually early hour–for him at least–before midday.



Jeffrey Lee’s Koongarra – where love for land trumps love for money.

This article was first published in the Land Rights News January 2015 edition.

THE words projected on a big screen at the final plenary session of the World Parks Congress in Sydney late last year said it all: “I could be a rich man today. Billions of dollars … You know, you can offer me anything, but my land is a cultural land,” read the script accompanying an image of Jeffrey Lee on his land at Koongarra which is now incorporated into the World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park.

Jeffrey Lee, the senior Traditional Owner of the Djok clan, speaks for the 12,000 hectares of land which used to comprise the former Koongarra Project Area. It contains an estimated 12,000 tonnes of high grade uranium which the French nuclear and mining company, Areva, has long been trying to access and develop.



Shamejob – the funding of NT remote Indigenous education is a disgrace

Ngukurr School. Photo: ABC.net.au

 This is a guest post by recently retired educator Meg Clarke. It was originally posted at the Educator Voices blog in August 2014. This is the second of two pieces by Meg looking at recent issues in NT Education.

Many readers will have read the article published in The Conversation by Marcus Waters. It is an opinion piece from a Indigenous academic in which he claims that Noel Pearson has allegedly managed to completely hijack Indigenous education and community development funding policy for a small group of ‘his people’ and for programs that are not evidence based or adequately scrutinised.

BOB GOSFORD | February 13, 2015 | AUSTRALIAN POLITICS | 1 |

The NT gets an “F for FAIL” on remote community education

At one of the COAG working party negotiations that I attended one state representative remarked that there was no point giving any funds to the NT because they wouldn’t deliver the goods and that the close-the-gap target could be achieved by focusing on the Indigenous population in the eastern states alone. Let’s not make this chilling black humour a reality.

BOB GOSFORD | February 11, 2015 | AUSTRALIAN POLITICS | 1 |

109 Australian Parliamentarians speak, but will Indonesia listen?










6 February 2015

H.E. Nadjib Riphat Kesoema

Indonesian Ambassador to Australia

Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia


8 Darwin Avenue

Yarralumla ACT 2600


Dear Excellency,

We write as parliamentarians from across the political spectrum in Australia to request your government’s kind attention to a matter that is of deep concern within our local communities as well as within the global community – the imposition of the death penalty.

Our fellow Australians, Myuran Sukumarun and Andrew Chan, are presently imprisoned at Kerobokan prison and are facing execution for the crime of drug trafficking.

We do not seek to minimise the serious nature of their crime, given the damaging effects of illicit drugs on our societies. We do believe Mr Sukumaran and Mr Chan should be punished.  Indeed, we have the highest respect for Indonesia’s sovereignty and political independence.

BOB GOSFORD | February 11, 2015 | UNCATEGORIZED | |

Speaking truth to power: Northern Land Council CEO Joe Morrison. National Press Club, 11 February 2015

Good afternoon, Ladies and Gentlemen.

My first duty is to acknowledge the traditional owners of these lands and pay my respects to their elders past & present. I also pay my respects to other elders present here today.

I am joined here by the Chairman and Deputy Chairman of the Northern Land Council, Mr Samuel Bush-Blanasi and Mr John Daly.

Today I want to share my thoughts about a vision, one that places Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the frame of northern development and trade.

BOB GOSFORD | February 11, 2015 | FUN STUFF | |

Paul Kelly and the Merri Soul Sessions – Darwin, 10 February 2015

Here are a few shots from last nights penultimate gig of the Merri Soul Sessions tour presented by Paul Kelly at Darwin’s Entertainment Centre.

Words to come.

Enjoy – me and a sold out house sure did!


BOB GOSFORD | February 09, 2015 | AUSTRALIAN POLITICS | 3 |

Suspend Northern Territory self-government!

This is a guest post by Ken Parish** that was originally posted* at Club Troppo  on February 7, 2015.

Political chaos continues in the Northern Territory in the wake of last Monday’s failed leadership coup against incumbent Chief Minister Adam Giles. Today’s Northern Territory News reports that Giles, who earlier in the week demoted the plotters’ number cruncher, Health Minister Robyn Lambley, to the backbench in an early act of vengeance, is now about to do likewise to Alice Springs MLA Matt Conlan.

Giles is also reported to be about to remove former CLP Chief Ministers Terry Mills and Denis Burke from lucrative government sinecures, apparently as punishment for suspected sympathy for the plotters or perhaps just suspected lack of sympathy for Giles. Controversial CLP fundraiser Graeme Lewis is also rumoured to be about to be sacked from government positions including chairman of the Darwin Waterfront Corporation.

BOB GOSFORD | February 07, 2015 | AUSTRALIAN POLITICS | 14 |

“I’m fucking Australian!” Section 18C is alive and kicking on the mean streets of Darwin

2am and Mitchell Street in downtown Darwin is not a good time and place to pick an argument with a titty bar bouncer.

But one morning a year ago Waqas Haider found himself standing on Mitchell Street with a handful of balloons facing an angry bouncer for the Honey Pot tits and arse “watch one of our showgirls, or pole acrobats or get a private show” bar at the grubby end of Mitchell Street in Darwin’s “entertainment” district.

BOB GOSFORD | February 05, 2015 | AUSTRALIAN POLITICS | 16 |

Failed statehood. Is it time for an(other) NT intervention?


This week’s ructions in the Northern Territory’s ruling Country Liberal Party were at first described as “chaotic”, then “bizarre” and finally “farcical.”

It has been all that and more, no less so now that the leaders of the attempted coup have either been promoted in a post-coup we-are-all-friends-now-in-the-CLP reshuffle-–or in the case of front-bencher Robyn Lambley, the only one who expressed her regard for the basic human values of honesty, integrity and respect–-sacked and given a show-cause as to why she shouldn’t be expelled from the CLP*. This train-wreck still has plenty of fuel and track left to run on yet.


Womens Agenda


Smart Company




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