Nyunggai Warren Mundine (file image)
Social media posts are misquoting Nyunggai Warren Mundine. Image by Richard Wainwright/AAP PHOTOS

Mundine misquoted in attempt to question his voice stance

Mikele Syron August 31, 2023

Nyunggai Warren Mundine said "Saying No to a voice will be to our eternal shame" in early 2023.


False. He was criticising an opinion piece titled "Saying No to a voice will be to our eternal shame". 

It is being claimed a prominent ‘no’ vote campaigner said that a failure to establish an Indigenous voice to parliament “will be to our eternal shame”.

This is false. One of Nyunggai Warren Mundine’s social media posts from January 2023 has been manipulated to make it appear as if he supported the voice.

Mr Mundine was instead criticising an opinion piece in The Australian which was titled “Saying No to a voice will be to our eternal shame.”

The article was written by La Trobe University Emeritus Professor Judith Brett, who supports the voice proposal.

A screenshot of the Facebook post.
 The post falsely attributes the quote to the prominent campaign figure. 

The claim is made in a Facebook post (screenshot here), with other posts also claiming the title of the opinion piece is a quote from Mr Mundine, as seen here, here, here, here and here.

The post includes a photo of Mr Mundine, with the title “What or who happened Warren?”

“Saying no to a voice will be our eternal shame,” it quotes him as saying.

Beneath the quote, it indicates Twitter, now called X, as its source.

However, the post has removed the full contents of his tweet, including the link to the opinion piece, which indicates where the words are from.

A screenshot of the original tweet.
 The original tweet uses the title of the opinion piece and has a link to it. 

His tweet from January 21 stated: “Australia is not a racist country. Stop running down Australians. Saying No to a voice will be to our eternal shame” with a link to the opinion article.

It also included an image with the words “it’s ok to say no #VoteNo”.

The first instance of the manipulated tweet being shared to social media appears to be this post, which also states: “For those wanting to share @nyunggai‘s words easily…”

Nyunggai  Warren Mundine with Jacinta Nampijinpa Price (file image)
 Nyunggai Warren Mundine and Senator Jacinta Nampijinpa Price are driving the ‘no’ vote campaign. 

A representative for Mr Mundine confirmed to AAP FactCheck the words in question were not from the prominent ‘no’ campaigner.

“The phrase is clearly the title of an opinion piece he was criticising and nothing more,” the representative said in an email.

It is not the first time Mr Mundine has been the target of misinformation.  AAP FactCheck has also debunked a claim that he supported a constitutionally enshrined national Indigenous voice in 2017.

The Verdict

The claim leading ‘no’ vote campaigner Nyunggai Warren Mundine said “saying no to a voice will be to our eternal shame” is false.

The sentence is the headline from an opinion piece written by academic Judith Brett in The Australian newspaper.

Mr Mundine was instead criticising the article on X, formerly known as Twitter.

False – The claim is inaccurate.

AAP FactCheck is an accredited member of the International Fact-Checking Network. To keep up with our latest fact checks, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

All information, text and images included on the AAP Websites is for personal use only and may not be re-written, copied, re-sold or re-distributed, framed, linked, shared onto social media or otherwise used whether for compensation of any kind or not, unless you have the prior written permission of AAP. For more information, please refer to our standard terms and conditions.