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Tuesday, 20 November 1973
Page: 1898

Senator LAUCKE (SOUTH AUSTRALIA) - I ask the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs whether many Aborigines entitled to vote have not enrolled for the National Aboriginal Consultative Committee elections. If so, to what does the Minister ascribe this situation? Can he indicate the number of Aborigines who have enrolled to date?

Senator CAVANAGH -The figure of those who had enrolled was given in an answer to a question by Senator Bonner. From memory, I think it was 37,000. It will be realised that a lot of Aborigines entitled to enrol have not done so. The reason for their non-enrolment could well be that they have no knowledge of their entitlement to enrol although we have done everything possible to get field officers to visit all sections of Aborigines. One section is opposed to the formation of the NACC and will not participate in the ballot. Whether they are true Aborigines or of other descent I do not know. I think that that is all the information it is possible to give on this question.

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