An Aurukun Principal has been car-jacked for the second time in a Far North Queensland indigenous community. The attacks followed one after another within two weeks. However, local Queensland teachers met on Sunday and decided that the school would remain open, though, the attacks have extremely frightened them.
The Western Cape community’s 25 teachers had returned Thursday after evacuating from the remote community over safety concerns. Apparently, three young men threatened Principal Scott Fatnowna and his wife on Saturday night, when they were coming back home after visiting colleagues. The young men were carrying machetes and knives. They took the government car from the principal but later got arrested, reported ABC.
Assistant Commissioner Paul Taylor said that the young men drove the car dangerously around and got bogged 2km out of the town. They were charged with armed robbery and burglary. The driver, who is only 15 years old has been sentenced with one count of dangerous operation of a vehicle, according to brisbanetimes.com.au.
The teachers, who are frightened by the chain of events are assured by the police that there would be security escorts for teachers as part of a new safety regime supported by Ian Stewart, Queensland Police Commissioner.
Queensland Teachers Union president Kevin Bates said, “Teachers will notify when they’re travelling between residences, around the community as well as to and from school. If there’s awareness by police or (education department) security teams of unrest in the community, people may be escorted just to ensure they’ve got some protection when travelling around.”
In a brief statement academic chairman Noel Pearson said that he had supported the teachers’ decision to not to leave the campus. However, according to Cairns Post, union officials have warned that if in future any mishap occurs, the teachers would be immediately removed from the community.
Notably, earlier this month there was another attack on the Aurukun principal and the offenders used an axe to threaten him that time. They also took his car away.