Abbott row over 'authentic' Aborigines

Britain's Prince Charles and Australian opposition leader Tony Abbott. Photo / AP
Britain's Prince Charles and Australian opposition leader Tony Abbott. Photo / AP

Australian Opposition leader Tony Abbott has become the target of criticism over comments he made about Aboriginal politicians.

Abbott said this week that it would be terrific to have an "authentic" indigenous representative of central Australia in Canberra in response to a question about the possibility of Northern Territory minister Alison Anderson switching to federal politics.

Sitting West Australian Liberal MP Ken Wyatt is the first indigenous Australian in the federal Lower House.

"I think it would be terrific if, as well as having an urban Aboriginal in our Parliament, we had an Aboriginal person from central Australia, an authentic representative of the ancient cultures of central Australia in the Parliament," Abbott said.

Abbott became the target of an online movement, with mostly Sydney-based tweeters leading the attack using the hashtag "I tried to be authentic but ..."

Abbott said reporting on the issue had been misleading.

- AAP

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