The Northern Territory Government has awarded a $51 million dollar construction contract to the wholly-Aboriginal run Bukmak Construction company for the development of 87 new homes on Elcho Island (known as Galiwin’ku by traditional land owners) off Arnhem Land. The development is part of a NT Government’s 5 year ‘Home Build Program’ and The National Partnership Agreement of Remote Indigenous Housing and will address housing issues on the island and provide job opportunities.
Similar developments uncovered asbestos debris in the soil of common or public areas on Galiwin’ku during construction of housing in late 2018 through to mid-2019. It is likely to be a result of the 2015 cyclones Lam and Nathan.
A recent NT Government commissioned report confirmed the significant presence of Asbestos, identifying the debris as a low-risk to health, despite the relocation of government agency staff from the island as a result of the findings.
The focus for ALPA (The Arnhem Land Progress Aboriginal Corporation), of which Bukmak Constructions operates under, continues to be the benefit the contract will provide for the Galiwin’ku community.