Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships Curtis Pitt urged Queenslanders to join him this Sunday at the 2011 Mabo Oration.

Minister Pitt said the Mabo Oration, held every two years since 2005, pays tribute to Eddie Mabo and the landmark High Court decision which legally recognised that Indigenous people had a special relationship to the land that existed prior to colonisation.

“The Mabo decision changed land laws in Australia, recognising traditional ownership for the first time and forever dispelling the myth that Australia was Terra Nullius when discovered by European settlers,” Mr Pitt said.

“Eddie Mabo will forever be recognised as a great Queenslander for his role in spearheading that change,” he said.

“This year’s Mabo Oration, Follow the stars: Indigenous culture, knowledge and intellectual property rights, is being delivered by Terri Janke, the foremost international authority on Indigenous Cultural and Intellectual Property.

“Terri was born in Cairns with family connections to both the Torres Strait Islands (Meriam) and Cape York Peninsula (Wuthathi) and I’m very much looking forward to hearing her speak on Sunday,” Mr Pitt said.

“The evening will also include performances by didgeridoo artist David Williams, Torres Strait Islander dancer Albert David and award-winning duo, Busby Marou.

Mr Pitt, also the Minister for Disability Services, said the event was accessible to all.

“Auslan interpreters Leanne Beer, Queensland’s Professional Interpreter of the Year and her colleague Maree Madden, will be signing the 2011 Mabo Oration so people of all abilities can come and enjoy,” Mr Pitt said.

“Queensland set a new benchmark internationally with the Auslan interpreting of the Premier’s media conferences during our summer of disaster, due to our great partnership with Deaf Services Queensland.”

The 2011 Mabo Oration will be held at the Playhouse at QPAC on Sunday 3 July at 5pm, with light refreshments being served from 4:30pm.

Tickets are available for $20 plus booking fee at or by phoning 136 246.