This is an NFSA Digital Learning resource. See all Digital Learning websites.
Mabo home
...struggles I been through over the past years...
Eddie Koiki Mabo's final diary extract:

Tuesday 31st December.

Netta, Selena, Maria came to see me at Ward 4HB Townsville General Hospital. They stayed until 10.00pm. After they left me the rest of the night was not so bad, I laid in bed thinking about future and how I would like it to be even if I am not there.

I thought about the struggles I been through over the past years since 1963 to 1991 or to the beginning of 1992, while the rest of Black Australia awaits with me for the high Court decision to be brought down at any time, or would it be in time for me to receive it? And make further discussions of the outcome of that discussion. For further actions if this decisions are not favourable.

If I am not around I want my children to work closely with my lawyers and other advisers to plan future actions. Working closely with other plaintiffs is also important.

I also thought about how my wife the most important person in my life how she stuck to me over many hardships and hurdles in life but somehow we made it perhaps better than others. To me my wife has been the most adorable person a friend in my life, a most wonderful lover and we loved every minute of our lives together. Over the years we were stuck together like a Gep to Baizarr. She allowed Baizarr to make first move on making decisions affecting our daily lives. Decisions re: run of the house and children were decisions for mother, I was also classed as her baby and she could push me around at Home any which way - I just loved it every bit of it.

Wednesday 1st January 1992.

I spent this day in Tville Hospital, the night Netta, Malita & Krystle came to see me.

Marriott, Wanee & their families came to see me one night but I dont remember exactly which night. I advised all of them on the problems I was having health wise. I said to all of them please take my advise and stop taking foreign matter into your bodies such as tobacco, cigarettes alcohol and other forms of unnecessary drugs, tea & coffee could be the same.

Do not ever get annoyed if your love ones express their concerns about your drinking, or smoking habits, especially when they ask you to Stop Smoking or Stop Drinking Grog. Because such concerns are made out of Love, they Love you so much that they don't want you to ruin yourself with dreadful drugs such as the ones I mentions Above.

I said to Mum one day "oh you dont Love me anymore that why you dont buy anymore smokes for me." She bust out into tears straight away and She Said, "Oh no it not that Koiki, you know, too well that I Love you very much and I don't want to be seen as also killing you with all these drugs. So in the future please do not make me buy you anymore drugs or cigarettes because I dont want to kill you with my Love & Kindness..." Then from that day on I never asked mum to buy me any more smokes or rubbish which may be bad for my health -

So my advice to all my children, including Marriott, Wanee AND EZRA, To all my grandchildren & their children. Please Dont Smoke or Drink Liquor, Make 1992 the starting year for our Drug Free Years that will follow from now on.

Keywords: activism, cancer, death, diaries, human rights, resistance, 1991-1992

Diary extracts, 1992.
© Mabo Family Collection
Source: Mabo, Edward Koiki