1 December 2021
The Territory Labor Government’s remote housing program has reached another milestone with the first tenders awarded as part of an $81 million deal that will see around 150 homes built and improved across the Groote Archipelago.
The NT Government has teamed up with the Anindilyakwa Land Council in a joint investment towards the biggest project since the inception of the Remote Housing Investment Package in 2017.
Period contracts, worth nearly $17 million, awarded by select tender to Aminjarrinja Enterprises Aboriginal Corporation and GEBIE Civil and Construction, will cover the first year of works under the NT Government’s commitment.
The scope of works includes demolition, construction and upgrades within the Alyangula township and major communities of Angurugu, Umbakumba and Milyakburra.
Over the next five years 76 homes will be constructed, with 74 existing homes to be extended under the Room to Breathe program across the two main islands in the archipelago.
The joint program follows through on a 2018 Local Decision Making agreement between the NT Government and the Anindilyakwa Land Council that seeks to empower the people of the Groote Archipelago to determine their own service delivery models.
This includes plans to transition housing to regional and local control with an agreement to implement a single, sustainable, diverse and culturally-appropriate community housing system across the Groote Archipelago, controlled and managed by the Anindilyakwa people. To this end, the Anindilyakwa Land Council has established the independent Anindilyakwa Housing Aboriginal Corporation.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Remote Housing and Town Camps Chansey Paech:
“This new joint venture with the Anindilyakwa Land Council sets a new benchmark for how we do housing in the bush.
“The Territory Labor Government is excited about working with the ALC as well as Aminjarrinja Enterprises Aboriginal Corporation and GEBIE Civil and Construction to provide better housing along with a range of opportunities including long term jobs and training opportunities for local Aboriginal people.
“Our remote housing program is unprecedented by any other Territory Government because we are serious about building better homes; alleviating overcrowding; and building empowered, sustainable communities with strong economies.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for Treaty and Local Decision Making, and Member for Arnhem Selena Uibo:
“It is inspiring to see how far Anindilyakwa Land Council has come since the signing of the 2018 Local Decision Making agreement, and I congratulate them on everything they have achieved which is benefitting remote Territorians.
“Local Decision Making is delivering for Aboriginal Territorians by improving services for those living in remote and regional areas. It is also providing new opportunities for jobs on country, and strengthening capacity and leadership.”
Quotes attributable to Anindilyakwa Land Council CEO Mark Hewitt:
“The Anindilyakwa people value the NT Government’s dedication to addressing the housing needs across the Groote Archipelago which will bring the standard in line with mainstream Australia.
“In particular we appreciate the trust the NT Government has demonstrated by implementing Local Decision Making measures that give power to the people from our communities to control the design, location, construction, allocation and management of the houses.
“Our commitment to building better houses is already well underway and we look forward to rolling out more works in the new year.”