Jobs Events Advertise

Captain Cook statue hacked, Queen Victoria memorial vandalised

A Captain Cook memorial statue has been sawn off at the ankles and a Queen Victoria monument doused in red paint on the eve of Australia Day.

Police are investigating criminal damage to the Cook statue at Jacka Boulevard, St Kilda, reported about 3.30am on Thursday.

Several people were seen loitering in the area about the time of the incident, police said.

A video posted to Instagram shows a group, with their faces covered, bringing down the statue and spray painting the words "the colony will fall" on the stone plinth.

The same group visits the Queen Victoria memorial at Queen Victoria Gardens and throws red paint over the monument.

Port Phillip Council Mayor Heather Cunsolo said she was disappointed the statue of Captain Cook had been vandalised.

"We understand and acknowledge the complex and diverse views surrounding Australia Day," she said.

"We can't condone, however, the vandalism of a public asset where costs will be ultimately borne by ratepayers."

The Cook statue has been taken away and workers removed the feet from the plinth.

Ms Cunsolo said the council had arranged for security at the monument from Thursday afternoon as a precaution.

The same statue was doused with red paint by protesters in January 2022 as an "invasion day" statement.

A spokesperson for the City of Melbourne said the council was aware of the Queen Victoria memorial vandalism and notified police.

A spray can and red paint tins were seen metres from the statue.

Victorian Premier Jacinta Allan said the government would work with Port Phillip council to repair and reinstate the Cook statue at St Kilda.

"This sort of vandalism really has no place in our community," Ms Allan said.

Opposition Leader John Pesutto said vandalism was "totally unacceptable".

"There's no place for acts of vandalism or any other violent acts against people or property in our community," he said.

"We support the right of people to protest and demonstrate but it must always be done in a peaceful and respectful way."

While January 26 continues to mark a historically significant day commemorating the anniversary of British settlement in 1788, its meaning is becoming increasingly contested.

For a growing portion of the population the day marks the beginning of a colonial history afflicted with discrimination and dispossession of Indigenous peoples, prompting calls to change the date of the national day.

January 26 is alternately observed as a day of mourning for Indigenous Australians, with invasion and survival day protests.

Australia Day wasn't always celebrated on January 26, once a NSW-centric celebration honouring the foundations of its capital city.

Since its official recognition as Australia Day in 1935 and establishment as a public holiday in 1994, January 26 has become synonymous with nationalist festivities.

Rachael Ward, Tara Cosoleto and Vi Truong - AAP


Rolfe to wrap up evidence in Walker death inquest
An inquest into the death of an Indigenous teenager is set to wrap up after 18 months as evidence from the police officer who sh...
Neve Brissenden 1 Mar 2024
Murujuga Aboriginal Corporation strikes deal for "equal footing in future decision-making" over Murujuga country
Murujuga Aboriginal Corporation has defined a new approach to agreement making in Australia, following the signing Thursday of a...
Giovanni Torre 1 Mar 2024
Court finds Youpla misrepresented itself as an Aboriginal-owned or managed company
The collapsed funeral fund Youpla misrepresented itself as Aboriginal owned or managed, the full Federal Court ruled on Thursday...
Dechlan Brennan 29 Feb 2024
Clean energy toolkit launched to drive sustainable development
In a year-long effort, the recently unveiled Community Energy Planning Toolkit presents a seven-step guide for First Nations com...
Joseph Guenzler 29 Feb 2024

   Rachael Ward, Tara Cosoleto and Vi Truong   

Mills without a home leading into Olympics after being waived by Hawks
The Atlanta Hawks have waived guard Patty Mills, signalling a possible end to the popular veteran’s NBA career. The Torres Stra...
Callan Morse 1 Mar 2024
Latrell ready to go global with no fears for thin pitch
The Trell-Mit brand is ready to go global with the superstar South Sydney fullback declaring the skinnier Las Vegas field will...
Scott Bailey 1 Mar 2024
Powell-Pepper ban sets harsher penalty precedent: Port
Port Adelaide won't appeal against Sam Powell-Pepper's four-game ban, with coach Ken Hinkley saying the AFL has sent a blunt war...
Steve Larkin 1 Mar 2024
Rolfe to wrap up evidence in Walker death inquest
An inquest into the death of an Indigenous teenager is set to wrap up after 18 months as evidence from the police officer who sh...
Neve Brissenden 1 Mar 2024