A traditional owner of the Carmichael coal project site will be left bankrupt after federal court ordered him to pay legal costs associated with attempts to stop Adani from developing the site.
Wangan and Jagalingou (W&J) cultural leader, Adrian Burragubba, has been ordered to pay over $600,000 for multiple failed cases regarding the Galilee Basin project.
Burragubba, who is the senior spokesperson for the Wangan and Jagalingou council, said he would continue to speak out against Adani and the governments that authorised the projects approval.
“I opposed Adani because we will not be on our hands and knees begging for handouts from mining companies, while they destroy our land and culture,” he said.
“This bankruptcy means nothing to me. I have nothing for Adani to take. My family were removed from the land by governments and everything that was rightfully ours was taken from us.”
Adani responded to the court proceedings regarding Burragubba via a media statement emphasising that every claim he made has lost at trial and on appeal and the traditional owner has been held responsible by the courts.
“The W&J people have strongly supported the indigenous land use agreement with Adani by a vote of 294 to 1 and Mr Burragubba refuses to accept the voice of his own people,” the statement said.
“Activists who use the courts for law fare should be held to account, they are not above the law. It should be noted that Mr Burragubba has been urged on by environmental groups who now seemed to have abandoned him.”
Adani’s statement also said that once it receives the funds from Burragubba, they would be passed on to charities.