When whitefella law intervenes in a love affair
Lindsay Murdoch; 14/9/09
It was true love. Everybody agrees on that. The girl and boy first met in 2006 at a sports weekend in Papunya, an Aboriginal community on the edge of the Northern Territory’s western desert. She was 12 and he was 16. Soon after they were married in the traditional Aboriginal way and began living as husband and wife in a remote outstation with a population of 100.
Northern Territory judge Stephen Southwood acknowledges the couple were in love and their families supported the relationship. Under complex inter-marriage rules Aboriginal people have abided by for centuries, it was a good match.