It’s time for Alison Anderson to show the Northern Territory she has policies to offer, says a senior member of the First Nations Political Party.
Ms Anderson and fellow Aboriginal backbenchers Larissa Lee and Francis Xavier resigned from the Country Liberal Party (CLP) on Friday, plunging the government to a minority position of 12 seats in the 25-seat Legislative Assembly.
The government rejected their list of demands, which included plum jobs for all three, as not featuring any policies to benefit the bush members they said they were fighting for.
Ms Anderson told the ABC on Friday they would begin their own regional party that is not race-based, which is an insult to First Nations, says Rosalie Kunoth-Monks, a senior member of the party.
“The party is actually inclusive, open to all races of our nation,” Ms Kunoth-Monks told AAP on Monday.
“We’re trying to spearhead the economic, social and cultural development that will benefit all participants in nation-building and wealth creation.”
She said she doubted very much whether the rebel trio would have the same goals.
Ms Kunoth-Monks and other founding members of the party met with the rebel trio last weekend to discuss their joining the FNPP, before they announced they would sit on the crossbenches as independents before forming their own party.
“She wasn’t really listening to what we were saying; she wasn’t really receptive,” Ms Kunoth-Monks said.
She said it was ironic that Ms Anderson was seeking to form a non-racially based party since her recent accusations against the NT government had, in the words of Chief Minister Adam Giles, damaged race relations in the NT.
“That’s a no-no as far as I’m concerned, especially without consulting us bush people who are sitting out here, who she says she represents,” Ms Kunoth-Monks said.
She said it was time for Ms Anderson to prove that she had the best interests of her constituents at heart.
“Alison has been in there for nine years. Come on, girl, give us something back,” she said.
“Alison, I want to see your policies and I want to see whether it’s feasible. I don’t believe you can just mouth off left, right and centre without consulting the grey matter, because you’re not there on your own, you’re elected.”