Contractors conducting surveying works have continued to flout a mandatory stop work period while Djab Wurrung Traditional Owners await mediation with Major Road Projects Victoria.
Contractors for Major Road Projects Victoria have now been escorted off sacred women’s Country by sovereign Djab Wurrung land protectors and their supporters for two consecutive days. On Wednesday, 18th September, police were also onsite permitting the works to take place.
One of several police officers present claimed “there will be no intimidation, this is a peaceful protest, they’re almost finished their work, they are coming back now.”
However, representatives from the Djab Wurrung Embassy continue to insist that “We feel threatened, our kids’ cultural heritage is being threatened. This is intimidation. Police and contractors have failed to respect the mediation process that was agreed to last week.” (Amanda Mahomet, Representative for the Djab Wurrung Heritage Protection Embassy.)
During the interactions onsite, it was alleged that the contractors’ hired security guards were carrying weapons and that they refused to show the land protectors the contents of their pockets. It has also been alleged that the security guards have been changing their identification numbers daily.
“This is a peaceful action to protect country. The high security presence is a risk to the safety of Djab Wurrung people and all of our supporters. We simply want to engage in open dialogue about works that continue to take place on land that is sacred to us” Amanda Mahomet.
The peaceful blockade to protect sacred Djab Wurrung Country continues. Please visit the Djab Wurrung Embassy website to see how you can help: www.dwembassy.com