Boral gives land to elders

Wadawurrung woman Macaylah Johnson with Boral Australian and international chief executives Wayne Manners and Zlatko Todorcevski. (Supplied)

Boral officially transferred a 3.6 hectare Waurn Ponds property to its traditional owners, the Wadawurrung people, in a ceremony last Friday.

Preparations to support the formal transfer to the Wadawurrung Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation, a registered group representing the region’s elders, commenced in mid-2018.

“Returning the land to its traditional owners is of special significance to Boral, and it has struck a chord with our people,” Boral international chief executive Zlatko Todorcevski said.

“We are a proud Australian company, and as we celebrate Boral’s 75th anniversary, we proudly acknowledge today’s achievement and what it means to the Wadawurrung people.

“We recognise that returning this parcel of culturally significant land to its traditional owners is an important step to help close the gap between the company and our people, and the First Australians.

“We look forward to a continued strong relationship with the Wadawurrung people built on respect and collaboration.”

Wadawurrung Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation chief executive Paul Davis welcomed the land transfer.

“The value of this gesture by Boral in returning this site, which holds great significance to the Wadawurrung people, cannot be understated,” he said.

“I genuinely hope that the history we are witnessing here today will inspire and encourage companies, private and public, to make a meaningful contribution to reconciliation.

“The legal title for the land, off Ghazeepore Road and known as Duneed Reserve, is in the process of being transferred [to the corporation] in recognition of the cultural significance the site holds.”