Story Archive » Volume 24 » Issue 10 »

Senator Nigel Scullion elected acting CLP president

p2254 Nigel Scullion 3 SM



He throws down the gauntlet to the “faceless Labor powerbrokers of the Gunner Government” and the Chief Minister’s “union puppet-masters” set to tax Territorians “to oblivion”.


Fit-out of megafauna display in the Mall goes to local firm

Museum of Central Australia & Strehlow Research Centre; Alcoota Station



The world’s largest bird, marsupial lions, marsupial wolves and herds of giant browsing cousins of the wombat will be invading Todd Mall, writes Lauren Moss, Minister for Tourism and Culture.


Consultants with 40,000 years on the job

2499 Ted Egan singer SMp 24100 Ted Egan tracker SM



Ted Egan, the singer, historian and former NT Administrator (at left) calls for retaining a team of skilled Aboriginal trackers to save lives and maintain incomparable skills, such as those in which Ted Egan the tracker (at right) excelled. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. FULL STORY »

Police looking for man after vehicle pursuit

24101 Henwood SM



Police are calling for information on the whereabouts of 33-year-old Richard Henwood (pictured). FULL STORY »

Gallery: Friday is the day

p2351 Robyn Lambley SM



It’s the only and last chance for people to have a say on the National Indigenous Art Gallery, writes  Robyn Lambley (pictured)Independent Member for Araluen. FULL STORY »

Spread renewables, government asked




Renters and government employees should not miss out on rooftop solar, writes Harshini Bartlett from RePower Alice Springs.


Bush community learning centre to close

 24101 Utopia Learning Centre SM



When the Utopia learning centre is shut down, will teenagers gravitate to Alice Springs and get into trouble? Tristan Ray, from the Central Australian Youth Link-Up Service, says locals are asking this question. FULL STORY »

Meeting in CM office will be Transport Hall’s ‘make or break’




CEO Liz Matin (pictured) says assistance from departmental officers with compliance issues of no use: “We continually get put in the too hard basket,” she says. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. FULL STORY »

The ‘tough gig’ of doing things the right way

p2499p Doris & Peter 2 SM
In a unique partnership, Doris Kngwarraye Stuart and artists Dan Murphy and Lucy Stewart have been conducting tours of Mparntwe’s sacred sites for the past nine years, mainly for artists, to inform and inspire their creative endeavours in response to this country.  KIERAN FINNANE reports on the legacy, on show at Watch This Space. FULL STORY »

Breaking the violence silence: at home, around the world

24100 pilgrims guilty 1 SM24199 White Ribbon Day SMThankyou Alice Springs for breaking the silence about violence of men against women, and the five Peace Pilgrims for breaking the silence about the violence of Pine Gap, write Chris Hawke and Joy Taylor.  FULL STORY »

‘Disappointing’ $2m sale of Earth’s Creation

p2499o Kngwarraye Jennings SM
The acclaimed masterpiece by Emily Kame Kngwarreye recently sold at auction for $2m, twice the sum paid for it by its former owner, Tim Jennings of Mbantua Gallery in Todd Mall, but well below the two independent valuations he had for it – one for $4m and one for $3m. FULL STORY »

Five Peace Pilgrims guilty on all counts

24100 pilgrims guilty 1 SM



The jury took just half an hour to finalise their deliberations this morning. KIERAN FINNANE reports.



UPDATE, 24 November 2017, 4.52pm: Sentencing of all six Peace Pilgrims has been set down for December 4. FULL STORY »

Cops with assault rifles footage six years old

24100 Task Force ABC 1 SM



No cops in full battle gear with assault rifles to chase kids in the streets of Alice. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


Masked cops with assault rifles, but where are the parents?

24100 Task Force ABC 6 SM



Sending the Tactical Response Group to Alice is the latest idea for dealing with children getting ready for the summer crime spree. COMMENT by ERWIN CHLANDA. FULL STORY »

Compromise was needed to save youth crime plan

2468 Cocking, Satour SM



Is council divided? “Hopefully now, during this week, the other councillors who originally indicated they would vote against Cr Satour’s motion would gain a better understanding of it,” says Cr Cocking, pictured with Cr Satour on the campaign trail. FULL STORY »

Family violence is mostly men making a choice

24199 White Ribbon Day SM



“We cannot continue to face 42 women a year dying because their husband or their partner has made a choice. Indigenous women and girls are 35 times more likely to be assaulted. That is horrendous,” said police Commander Michael White today. He is pictured leading the White Ribbon march, nearest to the camera. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. FULL STORY »

Transport Hall of Fame important for town: Gunner

2472 Michael Gunner SM



Police will be providing protection from criminals and departmental officials assistance with “compliance and governance,” says Chief Minister.


Art at Anzac oval: No new rugby fields, says Lambley




Government will not guarantee funding for new playing field, writes Robyn Lambley, Independent Member for Araluen. FULL STORY »

Even if ‘unfair, unreasonable or too harsh’, it is still the law

p2499o Supreme Court jury box SM
It is not open to the jury – now considering verdicts in the trials of five Peace Pilgrims – to find the accused not guilty because they believe the law under which they are being judged is “unfair, unreasonable or too harsh”, said Justice John Reeves in his directions today. KIERAN FINNANE reports. FULL STORY »

Council not keen on offer of help to fight crime

24100 Phil Alice, Shane Lindner SM


The elite of traditional owners in Alice Springs got the cold shoulder from the town council last night as social initiatives of newly elected members were watered down or delayed in a marathon sitting. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. PHOTO: Senior Arrernte man Phil Alice got little thanks for his offer to fight the juvenile crime explosion shoulder to shoulder with local government. FULL STORY »

Minimise blackouts with community energy plan

24100 Harshini Bartlett 1 SM



Survey shows that 92% of respondents would buy electricity from a green (renewable energy) provider, according to the Repower Alice Springs, writes Chris Hawke. PHOTO: Repower spokeswoman Harshini Bartlett addressing the town council on Monday. FULL STORY »

Learning from the past? Never!

24100 council bush visitors SM



Town council and crime and Aboriginal leaders? Sounds familiar, writes Alex Nelson.  FULL STORY »

Midnight bag snatch alleged

24100 suspect 1 SM



Alleged bag snatcher runs to Wills Terrace causeway.


No extraordinary emergency at Pine Gap: judge rules

The defences which the Peace Pilgrims have tried to raise in relation to entering the Pine Gap prohibited area have been ruled out by Justice John Reeves. KIERAN FINNANE reports on this and closing remarks. FULL STORY »

Did Peace Pilgrims answer an extraordinary emergency?

p2499n Pine Gap Franz & Tim SMp2499n Pine Gap Tanter 400
If they can establish that they were and that their action was a reasonable way to respond, then that could be a legal defence of their actions. But the Crown contends that it was an ordinary day and night at Pine Gap, business as usual, even if that business does involve drone strikes. KIERAN FINNANE reports. FULL STORY »

Leaders want town council help to fight youth crime

2499 Anzac cops 1 SM


Aboriginal elders are seeking a new lease of life for a long idle memorandum with the council in the wake of an alleged robbery by a 14-year-old girl and a 13-year-old boy, and a violent clash outside the Catholic Church. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. PHOTO: Floodlights at Anzac Hill to discourage rock throwing. FULL STORY »

Pine Gap’s role in drone warfare: former Senator, former PM

p2499m Pine Gap Scott Ludlum SM
Justice John Reeves allowed some evidence on the issue from both former senator Scott Ludlam, in the witness box, and former Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser, in a tendered radio interview. KIERAN FINNANE reports. FULL STORY »

Public money flowing into facility about to be closed

2479 juvenile detention 2 SM


Tradies are still busy refurbishing and expanding the Alice Springs Youth Detention Centre which Michael Gunner says will be closed very soon. ERWIN CHLANDA. reports.


UPDATE Monday 9:40am


‘Royal Commission report will live as stain on the NT’

2499 Royal Commission rally SM2499 Michael Gunner SM



As Chief Minister, I accepted the responsibility of making the changes necessary so no Chief Minister needs to address this again, writes Michael Gunner. Speakers at a small rally a short while ago (at left).


Batchelor negotiating major government contract

2479 Batchelor 8 SM



One contract the institute had will be put out to tender, the other – worth $11m for the current year – is being negotiated for 2018. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


Strange encounters: the Peace Pilgrim and the Police Sergeant

p2499k Pine Gap Pestorius SM
“Hi, Ken.” “Good morning, Margaret.” Not many cross-examinations begin this way. KIERAN FINNANE reports on an unusual relationship arising from the long history of protest at the Pine Gap military base. FULL STORY »

Royal Commission: Children’s voices are at the centre




Young Aboriginal people are by far the tragic majority in the horror statistics Commissioners Margaret White AO and Mick Gooda were confronted by.


Wide-ranging and drastic recommendations about government personnel and facilities.



Cut mining royalties to land councils: elder

2499 Robin Granites SM



“White fellers” at the CLC – lawyers, anthropologists, administration  – “think they are the bosses,” says Senior Warlpiri man Robin Granites (pictured). Report by ERWIN CHLANDA.


Masterpiece to be lost as gallery planning plods on

2499 Earth’s Creation SM2499 Emily Kame Kngwarreye SMNo bids from government nor council at auction of Earth’s Creation (at left) by Emily Kngwarreye (at right). Report by ERWIN CHLANDA. FULL STORY »

Peace Pilgrims: evidence on why, not if they were at Pine Gap

p2499k Peace Pilgrim Jim Dowling SM
They will be presenting evidence that Raytheon, which they suggest is a large private defence contractor at the base,  is also one of the world’s largest suppliers of weapons, and that Pine Gap is involved in providing targeting information for those weapons. However, Crown witness Sgt Kenneth Napier said Raytheon is no longer a “service provider” at the base. KIERAN FINNANE reports. FULL STORY »

Peace Pilgrims fight Pine Gap charges: their actions intended to defend themselves and others from imminent disaster

p2499j Pine Gap 5 Day 1 SM


They were allegedly detected standing on rocks on a steep hill within Pine Gap military base boundaries, playing musical instruments. They face charges with a maximum penalty of seven years on gaol. KIERAN FINNANE reports.

UPDATE 17 November 2017, 9.00am: The trials of the Peace Pilgrims have been raised in the Senate. FULL STORY »

Guilty: unanimous jury verdict for Peace Pilgrim

p2499i Paul Christie 270
The jury took little more than half an hour to reach their unanimous verdict. KIERAN FINNANE reports.

UPDATE, 15 November 2017, 6.15pm: Crown wants Peace Pilgrim to serve real time in gaol. FULL STORY »

Troubled kids: A year with little to show for

2499 street kids SM



In the past three months, only one out of every 41 youth detainees in the NT was not Aboriginal. And on any given day, more young Aboriginal people on remand, without convictions, fill youth detention centres than those with convictions. PATHI RAJ reports.


Drug haul estimated at $850,000

2499 cannabis SM



Police allege two men were running drugs from South Australia.


Pine Gap’s nuclear role and the alternative

p2499j Pine Gap Kim & rocket SM


RICHARD TANTER, an acknowledged academic expert on nuclear weapons and international relations, describes the role of Pine Gap in a possible nuclear confrontation between the United States and an enemy state such a North Korea, and argues for the alternative, a nuclear ban treaty, already signed onto by the majority of the world’s governments. FULL STORY »

MyFuel prices up instead of down

2499 MFuel SM



The Government got it wrong with the MyFuel web site which requires retailers to publish retail fuel prices, writes Opposition Leader Gary Higgins. 


Mystery fault may have triggered blackout

2499 Remote Operations Centre SM



A long-time fault in the general area of the Sienna Village is likely to have caused Thursday’s blackout, and it took the new Remote Operations Centre in Darwin (picture by Territory Generation) too long to bring power back to Alice, says the Electrical Trades Union. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


Here we go again …

2499 council chambers in rain SMIMG_4106 SMThe only “electrical activity” in town didn’t come from the power station but from the sky. The black-out has forced tonight’s council meeting to be postponed. The photo of the municipal chambers without the lights on (at left) is by Councillor Eli Melky, from his office across the road – also in darkness. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. AT RIGHT: But come 6:55pm and it’s all over bar the shouting. FULL STORY »

Government breaches faith over CM appointment

2498 Cliff Weeks



Professional correspondence between the Alice Springs News Online and the Chief Minister’s department was passed on to lawyers for Cliff Weeks (pictured) whose quarter of a million dollars a year appointment to the department’s Alice Springs office is subject to defamation action against The Australian newspaper. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


Call for public to monitor police at bottle shops

2498 cop at bottlo SM



Keep an eye on the cops at bottle shops, says alcohol control campaigner: A vicious cycle occurs when TBLs have gaps, booze purchases increase, causing a spike in crime that requires further withdrawals of police from points of sale, says PAAC. Report by ERWIN CHLANDA.


José Petrick tells the story of her long life, well lived

p2499v Jose Petrick SM
“She has relished her experiences, great and small, and always gone forward to meet them or seek them out, not driven by a singular ambition but by the desire to live a life of meaning and value, to herself and others,” writes KIERAN FINNANE after reading her recently launched memoir. FULL STORY »

The Centre’s landscape brought into a castle in town

24111 Panorama Guth 1 SM



Two Dutch artists celebrated The Centre’s natural wonders in a stunning cylindrical painting. Sadly, after 30 years as a major tourist attraction, Panorama Guth burned down 2005. Historian ALEX NELSON remembers. FULL STORY »

No Turnbull Christmas present for CDU




Charles Darwin University expects to lose $5.5m in funding over the next two years, write Warren Snowdon (pictured)Luke Gosling and Malarndirri McCarthy. FULL STORY »

Santa’s big day: Hot and maybe wet

24111 Santa SM



Temperature could be a record but rain is not very likely. PHOTO: It won’t be anything like this. FULL STORY »

Police officers targeted by rock throwers

Police seek witnesses of the incident involving an orange Holden. Police media release.  FULL STORY »

Horror numbers in tourism stats, with a hint for a solution



When will promoters of the industry wake up to the crass funding inequalities and harness the assets on the doorstep of Alice Springs? ERWIN CHLANDA reports.

UPDATE Friday, December 22 at 3:40pm in which Tourism Minister Lauren Moss emphasises a new Business Events Support Fund “which will allow the NT to more aggressively compete for lucrative business events” and “more in marketing [of] our festivals and sporting and cultural events”. FULL STORY »

NT’s top Aboriginal Year 12 student from OLSH in Alice

24110 Kai Simpson SM



St Philip’s College student Kai Simpson (at right) received an ATAR of 99 which placed him amongst the Top 10 students in the NT, a record field of 1430. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


The grass is greener on the other side of the border

24110 marijuana SM



Police allege seized cannabis would have been worth $300,000 on the street. FULL STORY »

Ridesharing to start in February




Government licence fees for commercial passenger vehicles to drop sharply, writes Nicole Manison (pictured), Minister for Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics. FULL STORY »

Council to introduce kerbside recycling




A year in the making, the initiative will reduce what goes into the landfill (pictured), writes Mayor Damien Ryan.  FULL STORY »

Local government: A lot of action beyond the 3Rs

24107 Murray Bridge cattle OK



People who are saying a council should do more than “rates, roads and rubbish” can point to the Rural City of Murray Bridge for a shining example. ERWIN CHLANDA talks with its Mayor. FULL STORY »

Inquiry into fracking: Giving it the green light?

24107 fracking report 4 SM


Chairperson Rachel Pepper says “it is not the role of the Inquiry to make a recommendation whether or not the moratorium on hydraulic fracturing in the NT should be lifted. That is a matter for Government”. But she also says “the conclusion of this Inquiry is that the challenges and risks associated with any onshore shale gas industry in the NT are manageable”. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.


UPDATE 7am December 14: Arid Lands Environment Centre and Health Care Professionals Against Fracking. FULL STORY »

Town still upset with Stuart statue, say researchers

p2499v Lovell & Strangeways SM


A public arts engagement project that centred on a statue of the explorer has tapped into a vein of powerful emotion and resulted in the production of a collection of thought-provoking artworks, say Dr Judy Lovell and Dr Al Strangeways. FULL STORY »

What kind of world is this?

p2499u Giacometti, Michael 2 SMp2499u Giacometti cover SM
Themes of desire, fate, transcendence and cycles that won’t be broken recur throughout Michael Giacometti’s first collection of stories and become what bind together its seemingly “unconnected impressions”, writes DANI POWELL who launched the book last week in Alice Springs. FULL STORY »

Renewable research: $5m over three years

24105 Desert Knowledge precinct SM


The Intyalheme Centre for Future Energy housed at the Desert Knowledge Precinct (pictured) in Alice Springs will  position Alice as the Solar Capital of Australia and lead the way in research, development and implementation, write DALE WAKEFIELD, Member for Braitling, and LAUREN GANLEY, CEO. FULL STORY »

Hazardous waste facility near Alice recommended by EPA

24105 Tellus Holdings Chandler 1 SM


A temporary hazardous waste storage facility, an underground salt mine, a permanent disposal facility for hazardous waste (in the mined out, underground salt caverns), and associated infrastructure such as salt stockpiles, haul roads and access roads should be permitted, writes Dr PAUL VOGEL, NT EPA Chairman.


UPDATE 5:15pm Dec 12: ALEC comments.


UPDATE 7:00am Dec 13: “No consent from TOs.” FULL STORY »

Keith Lawrie Flats – people have had enough!

24105 Keith Lawrie flats, Jan 2006 B SM



Relentless violence, drinking and rowdy conduct: The answer from the government is a lick of paint and more lighting, comments ROBYN LAMBLEY, independent MLA for Araluen. PHOTO: The flats in 2006, by ALEX NELSON. FULL STORY »

Alice Beat Festival no longer wanted?

p2499u Kuchenbuch, Markus SM
As Artist in Residence with the NT Music School choral program and leader of the Alice Beat Festival in 2015, 2016 and 2017, Markus Kuchenbuch bids a regretful farewell, one that he did not seek. FULL STORY »

Judge Borchers: no misconduct but inappropriate conduct

2455 Greg Borchers SM


Judge Greg Borchers (left) did not accuse a youth of taking advantage of the recent death of his mother in explaining his offending in the Alice Springs Youth Justice Court, but he has been found to have “engaged in inappropriate judicial conduct” and will be removed from his duties at the youth court, says Chief Judge of the Darwin Local Court, Dr John Lowndes. FULL STORY »

Centre art stands out in SA festival

p2499s Tarnanthi Turnbull SMp2499s Tarnanthi YA face 350
Like familiar faces in a crowd, the works of Central Australian artists jump out as I visit Tarnanthi, billed as a Festival of Contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art at the Art Gallery of South Australia in Adelaide, writes KIERAN FINNANE. FULL STORY »

Hermannsburg historic precinct gets cash injection

p2449 Hermannsburg precinct 3 SM



Government cash will go to Hermannsburg for restoration, development, writes Lauren Moss, Minister for Tourism and Culture. FULL STORY »

Pollution? High fliers get it easy.

24105 Emirates SM


Jettisoning fuel in flight – why all the secrecy? The Federal authority says it hasn’t got the answers about an Emirates jet dumping fuel over Central Australia and the airline says it won’t give them. ERWIN CHLANDA investigates. FULL STORY »

Pay up, and you’ll make the news, inquiry is told

p2327-Braedon-Earley-SM24101 John Mansfield SM


Professional rules of journalism were routinely flouted by some Territory media in grubby cash-for-comment policies during the lead-up to last year’s NT election, according to 1Territory Party president, Braedon Earley (at right). He is giving evidence to Commissioner John Mansfield (at left), who is conducting the Political Donations Inquiry in the Territory. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.

UPDATE Dec 8 at 12 noon: Categorical denial by Pangaea and Tim Radburn. FULL STORY »

No gaol for Peace Pilgrims: sentence

p2499r Pine Gap Pilgrims sentence SM


Justice John Reeves has rejected the Crown’s call for custodial sentences for the six Pine Gap Peace Pilgrims, sentencing them in the Federal Court in Brisbane today.

UPDATED, 4 December 2017, 1.55PM.

UPDATED 5 December 2017, 10.41 am, with links to all our reports from the trials. FULL STORY »

Flair, imagination, vitality: Watch This Space in 2017

p2499q WTS Elliat prize SM
The annual award of the Lofty, to Elliat Rich for high endeavour in the arts, capped off a big year for Watch This Space as it heads towards its 25th anniversary in 2018. 25 years is long enough for a new generation to emerge and so it is at the Space. KIERAN FINNANE reports. FULL STORY »

Batchelor doesn’t need Santa. It has Gunner and Scullion.




Chief Minister Michael Gunner’s claims that his government honours transparency are hollow while he gives millions to an organisation which treats that principle with contempt. ERWIN CHLANDA reports. FULL STORY »