Senator Jacinta Nampijinpa Price was among those targeted by the anonymous statement saying the 61 per cent of Australians who voted No had committed a ‘shameful act’.
The controversial letter – shared by former Labor senator Nova Peris and activist Allira Davis – said ‘Australia is our country… It is the legitimacy of the non-Indigenous occupation in this country that requires recognition, not the other way around’.
But Ms Nampijinpa Price, who has both Aboriginal and Anglo-Celtic heritage, said that ‘Australians made it clear that they don’t want to be divided on the lines of race’ in the referendum vote.
‘The result was a rejection of the Voice body – which the authors [of the letter] neglected to reference – not a rejection of recognition, nor of the significance of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture in our nation’s history,’ she said.
Coalition senator Jacinta Nampijinpa Price (pictured) was among those targeted by the anonymous statement saying the 61 per cent of Australians who voted No had committed a ‘shameful act’
‘It was not a rejection of the right of anyone to be heard, rather an affirmation of every Australian’s equal right to be heard.’
The senator also noted that nobody had added their name to the Yes campaign’s statement.
‘This anonymous letter is a cynical attempt to keep race in the national conversation,’ she said.
‘It is a clear example of the division and disharmony the Voice would have delivered and is a continuation of the lies peddled by the Yes campaign over the last 12 months.’
The open letter claims to be ‘the collective insights and views of a group of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders, community members and organisations who supported Yes’.
But Ms Nampijinpa Price rejected the notion that they are representative of the broader views.
‘The referendum results clearly show the anonymous so-called ‘leaders’ do not represent the views of all Indigenous Australians,’ she said.
‘It is paternalistic and wrong for anyone to claim they have the ability or the authority to speak on behalf of all Australians of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent.’
The controversial letter was shared by former Labor senator Nova Peris (pictured) and activist Allira Davis
The senator lashed out at the fact that the letter was issued without being signed by anyone, saying ‘If you believe in something, you put your name on it.
‘If the authors of this statement truly believed in its content, they would not hide behind anonymity.’
The open letter, which followed a ‘week of silence’ by prominent Yes campaigners, also claimed its writers ‘have an agenda for justice in pursuit of our First Nations rights that sorely need a Voice – we will continue to follow our law and our ways, as our Elders and Ancestors have done’.
Ms Nampijinpa Price responded: ‘We must move away from this divisive rhetoric and unite as one Australia, because whether they are of Indigenous heritage or otherwise, this country belongs to all Australians.’