Timeline of the court cases in ‘Mabo’
The Queensland land rights case had barely even begun before QLD premier Joh Bjelke-Petersen attempts to prevent it. QLD government passes the Declaratoy Act to retrosepectively extinguish native title on QLD’s costal islands. This indicates that the government regognises the potential for the Mabo case to set a precedent that could impact on future land rights claim. Eddie- tells Netta that the Bjelke-Petersen act is a law “..to kill us all off’ Eddie meets the lawyers and finds out the case is broke and they apply for legal aid. 1986- Eddie returns to Murray Island for the court case to hear evidence Murray Island council reject his application to join the council ( he hasn’t lived there for 30 years) In the QLD Supreme Court we learn details of Eddie’s heritage and family history The case runs out of money again, but the Attorney General’s office funds a high court challenge of the Bjelke- Petersen act. They find the act unconstitutional and they can return to QLD to continue the Murray land rights claim QLD Court again
Killoran tries to get Eddie to withdraw from the case
The trial is not looking promising for him, there is a lot of evidence presented against his claim and he is made to look greedy, dishonest and arrogant on the stand under cross examination. At home Eddie is preoccupied with the case- this leads to violence when Netta dares to ask what if he loses. Dave Passi returns to the case
Justice Moynihan finds in favour of the Passi brothers, but not the Mabo claim
Eddie is now faced with a choice:
1. Appeal his own case
2. Pursue it in the High Court in a case that will be ‘about all blackfellas’ He chooses to go to the High Court, he asks if his name will still be on the case. The case is won.
However, Eddie died 5 months before the final decsion.
No Mabos were in court for the decsion...
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