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Mabo home
...Eddie's Native Title...
'In the final analysis Eddie Mabo was reintroduced into the picture. The view the High Court took of it in their judgements was that those detailed findings by Mr Justice Moynihan of which people on Murray Island held rights and interests in land were irrelevant. They decided that all they needed to address was whether a native title had survived on Murray Island. The precise details of who had what right or interest in what block of land were matters for the community to work out in accordance with their own traditions and customs.

'So in the end, Eddie Mabo, as a member of the Meriam community was delivered his native title. That is enjoyed now by his widow and his children as a member of the Meriam community of Murray Island.

'So in that sense the argument and the judgement over a ten year period on behalf of Eddie Mabo, the plaintiffs and the whole community came to fruition through the community rather than through individuals.'
Keywords: determinations, High Court of Australia, Keon-Cohen, Bryan, Mabo, Edward Koiki, Mabo judgement, native title, 1982-1992

Interviewed by Trevor Graham, 1996.
Author: Graham, Trevor
© Film Australia
Source: Keon-Cohen, Bryan