Letters to the Editor

by | Sep 23, 2020 | News | 0 comments

The problem with the NT’s relaxed boat laws

I have a minor issue. I live in the NT and I love it. The problem is, I have a boat that I want to take on holidays with me, but as soon as I cross the border I am not allowed to use it as it is unregistered.

The NT does not have rego or licensing for boats. It would be awesome if I could take out rego for the boat as an elective if needed. How do I go on holidays interstate and take my boat without breaking the law?  You must be licenced to even drive a boat interstate. Third party insurance and public liability comes with the rego.

Oni, Darwin

Road trip from Alice Springs unveils how little government attention it receives

We drove from Alice to Darwin last week and we noticed so many things.

Our trip started in Alice Springs. Driving past the NT Transport Department we immediately spotted an abandoned wreaked car on the left of the highway and then a second one.

We both said ‘wow’ welcome to Alice springs. We get driving and we really notice there is not much at rest breaks for both truckies and cars. Truckies are lucky to get one bin, not even a long drop or seating. We notice the whole way up not a single driver reviver – these are common in Queensland and are normally sponsored by different companies for milk and biscuits.

Driving through Tennant creek during grog hours was incredible, there were people everywhere, it was madness. We wished we had a dash cam, it was so different to Alice Springs. When we got to Mataranka we saw fuel that was heaps cheaper and a free hot springs – we couldn’t believe it.

It wasn’t trashed, there was no rubbish around, we were in shock. We spent a couple of nights in Katherine and noticed the same. The fuel is cheap and the town is clean. At night no kids around unlike Alice Springs. We got nervous it being so quiet, it just seemed so strange. The Katherine Hot Springs were even better with a really nice covered kid’s park area, a really really nice cafe and people around really enjoying themselves. It was becoming very noticeable that the government was spending money in Katherine. The missus even said the public toilet was clean unlike Alice’s, we definitely don’t use those ones.

We drive into Darwin. We check into our hotel that is definitely cheaper than Alice Springs, we have a nap and get up for dinner and it’s the first time in four years that we have not felt scared. No roller shutters, no humbugging for smokes or to buy alcohol. At all different hours I was out doing photography.

We noticed that Darwin city gets so much more cash spent on it. Alice gets the leftover change. The NT Government and councils really need to put the cappuccino down, and do a “How to improve the NT road tour”.

Shayne Martyn, Traveller

A free press is the lifeblood of democracy

Western society prides itself on liberal and democratic values. The health of a democracy is often gauged by press freedom and the ability of the press to hold governments to account.

In response to the AFP raids on journalists, the Federal Opposition Leader, Anthony Albanese, said that “freedom of the press is an essential component of our democratic system”.

Whilst the relationship between the press and governments is rarely amicable, one politician, considered one of the greatest of all time, had a simple analogy, which was “politicians complaining about the newspapers is like a sailor complaining about the sea”.

The Northern Territory is part of Australia. Australia is a democracy and people have a right to know what is happening around them. A free press is the lifeblood of democracy and any attempt to erode that is eroding democracy.

Darren, Katherine

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