Greater Bunbury Aboriginal Elders Group throws support behind Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice

Headshot of Sean Van Der Wielen
Sean Van Der WielenSouth Western Times
Greater Bunbury Aboriginal Elders Group spokesperson Dennis Jetta.
Camera IconGreater Bunbury Aboriginal Elders Group spokesperson Dennis Jetta. Credit: Sean Van Der Wielen/South Western Times

An Elders group representing the Bunbury area have thrown their support behind the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice ahead of Saturday’s referendum.

Greater Bunbury Aboriginal Elders Group spokesperson Dennis Jetta revealed the overwhelming majority of its members would be voting Yes.

He hopes the Voice will achieve better outcomes for younger generations of First Nations people if it is approved by the Australian public on the weekend.

“(We) feel that our young people have got to talk with government and negotiate what is good for them,” Mr Jetta said.

“It will give them a voice for the future.”

Out of the group’s nine members, seven have confirmed they will be voting Yes while two have abstained from revealing their vote.

Mr Jetta expressed concerns about the lack of progress which could result from the No vote succeeding on Saturday night.

“If the No (vote) goes through, it just leaves things as it is really,” he said.

Polling published on Monday by UK firm Focaldata showed the Yes campaign were facing an uphill battle in WA, with just one out of the State’s 15 Federal electorates in support of the change to the Australian Constitution.

In the Forrest electorate, which covers Bunbury, Busselton and Margaret River, 73.1 per cent of voters polled are intending to vote No.

The figure is higher in the O’Connor electorate, which includes Collie, Manjimup and Bridgetown, where 75.6 per cent of its polled voters backed the No campaign.

Saturday’s referendum will be the first held nationally since 1999 when the public was asked whether they supported Australia becoming a republic.

Early voting is already ongoing at polling centres in Bunbury, Busselton, Collie, Manjimup and Margaret River.

All polling places will be open on Saturday between 8am and 6pm. To find a polling place, visit aec.gov.au.

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