'She was Oodgeroo, Custodian of Minjerribah and senior lore woman of the Noonuccal people. In November 1974, a BOAC aircraft was hijacked in Dubai by Palestinian terrorists.
The aircraft was flown to Tunisia and held on the tarmac for three days. Kath Walker, member of the steering committee for the 2nd World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture meeting in Nigeria, and later to be Oodgeroo Noonuccal, was on that plane. Walker pleaded with the hijackers on behalf of the passengers, particularly a German banker who had been targeted for execution. Despite Walker's efforts, the German was shot and his body dumped on the tarmac.
This traumatic event, and her regret at her inability to save the man's life, stayed with Kath Walker throughout her life. Oodgeroo's way was negotiation, but her son's was armed struggle.
In Brisbane in 1971, along with Sam Watson the author of this startling new play, Denis Walker co-founded of the Australian Black Panthers, based on the radical and often violent American civil rights organisation.
This new production, created with the involvement of Oodgeroo's family, weaves her family and cultural life with her time on the Tunisian tarmac to tell the previously untold story of the tensions that tore at the fabric of one of Australia's most prominent families.
She was Oodgeroo, Custodian of Minjerribah and senior lore woman of the Noonuccal people. She was Kath Walker, acclaimed poet and activist, beacon of hope. She was mother to her two sons.' Source: /www.laboite.com.au/ (Sighted 21/04/2009).
'The Oodgeroo project is a creative collaboration between Sam Watson, La Boite Theatre and Kooemba Jdarra Indigenous Performing Arts made possible through a $100,000 sponsorship from the Queensland Government to mark the 40th anniversary of the 1967 referendum.' The project also received support from the Australia Council in 2007.
Source: Department of Communities website (Queensland), http://www.communities.qld.gov.au/