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NT parties 'turn their backs': candidate

AAP logoAAP 16/08/2016 Neda Vanovac

The Yolngu people of Arnhem Land are sick of mainstream political parties that chase them for votes and then ignore their wishes, an independent candidate for the seat of Nhulunbuy says.

Yingiya Mark Guyula is running against longtime Labor incumbent Lynne Walker at the August 27 election, and if he wins he wants to open a dialogue with the federal government about a treaty with Aboriginal people in Arnhem Land, he said.

"The treaty I'm talking about is getting power back, self-determination, self-management, and we need to be recognised and work in partnership," Mr Guyula told AAP on Tuesday.

He supports national recognition of indigenous people via a treaty as well, he added.

"For so many years we have voted for parties whether they are Labor Party or CLP, the major parties; our messages have just not gone through," he said.

"We voted those people and all they do is turn their backs against us and do whatever they want to do. Enough is enough."

Aboriginal communities were still suffering from the aftershocks of the 2007 Intervention, which was extended by Labor into the Stronger Futures program which totally disempowered communities, Mr Guyula said.

"Everything that has made us who we are has been taken from us," he said.

"Every other time we've cried, petitioned the government, 'take away the intervention, take away the stronger futures, give us our powers back'.

"They never respond, until it's time for the election and then they start to talk, all these promises that never happen."

Mr Guyula said local communities wanted more power over policing, education, and disciplining children.

"There's a problem in the communities and we're trying to work it out; we have been disempowered, we aren't allowed to smack children, we aren't allowed to give children tough love, how we were treated," he said.

"Because we let children go freely and they don't get any strict discipline in the area, they just running wild ... and ending up in the detention centres."

Ms Walker holds the seat with 69 per cent of the vote.

The NT election is on August 27.

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