Justice was done at the Adelaide Magistrates Court today. After two years of persecution by the building industry watchdog, the ABCC, Ark Tribe is now a free man.
Around four thousand men, women and children turned out to support Ark as he entered the court for the final time. Standing tall on the union built scaffold, before entering the courthouse, Ark Tribe was presented with 2,500 messages of support posted in recent weeks on the Rights on Site website, another example of the widespread support Ark Tribe has received throughout this disgraceful ordeal.
After entering the court to chants of "One Law for All", and "Ark Tribe here to stay", Ark emerged flanked by his lawyer Stephen Dolphin and CFMEU National Secretary Dave Noonan who announced the "not guilty" verdict. Naturally, this was met with a huge victory roar from the massive crowd who then chanted "Workers united will never be defeated!" This is no doubt a victory to saviour and one that not only Ark Tribe, but the whole union movement can be proud of. From day one, the solidarity has been fantastic, a fact that Ark made clear to supporters in a short but emotional thank you speech.
As he moved back into the corner of Victoria Square, now affectionately known as "Ark's Park" workers came from everywhere to congratulate him. There were handshakes and backslaps all round and many took the opportunity to have a photo taken with the man who has courageously challenged and beaten the bosses' attack dogs.
The crowd having disperesed to return to work or celebrate elsewhere, the question still remains, when will the Government abolish this fiercely anti-worker organisation known as the ABCC? Four thousand people can't be wrong, people like Ark Tribe should be congratulated for standing up for workplace safety, not interrogated by a secret police force or dragged through the courts for simply standing up for rights at work.
Well done Ark, you have carried us to victory, but the fight against the ABCC will continue until it has been, to coin a popular phrase, "dead, buried and cremated."
Ark Tribe here to stay, ABCC dead today!