Protesters vow to continue with anti-CSG battle
LOCK THE Gate Northern Rivers spokesman Ian Gaillard described himself as a "little worse for wear" yesterday after a sleepless night in a Grafton jail cell.
Mr Gaillard, 61, was one of six men held overnight on Monday after refusing bail conditions prohibiting them from returning to the Glenugie protest site. Five of those held overnight were from the Lismore region, including two from Nimbin.
Arrested while passing a water bottle to Nimbin man Bennie Zable who was locked on to a platform, Mr Gaillard dubbed his arrest "a joke". "It took me by complete surprise... I gave someone who was thirsty in the hot sun a bottle of water and I was arrested for it," Mr Gaillard said. In total, 30 charges were laid against 18 protesters, relating to either obstructing/hindering police, obstructing vehicles or pedestrians and entering private premises.
Despite his overnight ordeal, Mr Gaillard said the arrest had only stiffened his resolve against the CSG industry.
"The government's determined to have this go through and we're determined to oppose it," Mr Gaillard declared.
Kyogle Shire resident Daniele Voinot-Sledge, granted bail on Monday, was arrested while singing Advance Australia Fair as riot police herded protesters away from the drilling site.
"I was sitting on the road opposite the drilling site singing with many others," Ms Voinot-Sledge said.
The 65-year-old grandmother of 11 said she was also keen to attend the next blockade regardless of the shock detainment.
"I'm keen to keep going with the protest... the health of the planet is more important than little bruises," she said.
"Most of the people who are doing this are doing it for their children and grandchildren's future... this is only the beginning."