Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article titled “26 January: Clashes between police and protesters at Australia Day rally – as it happened” was written by Helen Davidson (now), Christopher Knaus (earlier), Paul Farrell (earlier), Elle Hunt (earlier) and Calla Wahlquist (earlier), for theguardian.com on Thursday 26th January 2017 07.02 UTC

7.02am GMT

This is where I’ll leave the blog. Thanks for joining me for the final hours, and enjoy your afternoons. Before I go, a quick check in at Waneroo.

The Perth suburb has today hosted Australia’s largest citizenship ceremony for the fourth year in a row, with 800 residents from 49 countries becoming citizens.

Here’s the Chambers family, who arrived from Wales 10 years ago.

The Chambers family, who arrived in Perth from Wales ten years ago, are seen after becoming citizens during an Australia Day citizenship ceremony in the city of Waneroo, in Perth’s north, Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017.
The Chambers family, who arrived in Perth from Wales ten years ago, are seen after becoming citizens during an Australia Day citizenship ceremony in the city of Waneroo, in Perth’s north, Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017. Photograph: Rebecca Le May/AAP

On the right is Waneroo councillor, Hugh Nguyen, attending the citizenship ceremony.

City of Wanneroo councillor Hugh Nguyen (right) is seen during an Australia Day citizenship ceremony in the city of Waneroo, in Perth’s north, Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017. In total in WA, 2744 people became citizens on Thursday, with the top five countries of origin being the UK, South Africa, India, Ireland and the Philippines.
City of Wanneroo councillor Hugh Nguyen (right) is seen during an Australia Day citizenship ceremony in the city of Waneroo, in Perth’s north, Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017. In total in WA, 2744 people became citizens on Thursday, with the top five countries of origin being the UK, South Africa, India, Ireland and the Philippines. Photograph: Rebecca Le May/AAP

Agam Benipal’s parents, Preet and Harman, moved to Perth from India. They were all at Waneroo’s citizenship ceremony today.

Baby Agam Benipal, whose parents Preet and Harman moved to Perth from India, is seen during an Australia Day citizenship ceremony in the city of Waneroo, in Perth’s north, Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017. Wanneroo has hosted Australia’s largest citizenship ceremony for the fourth year running, with 800 residents from 49 countries becoming citizens. In total in WA, 2744 people became citizens on Thursday, with the top five countries of origin being the UK, South Africa, India, Ireland and the Philippines.
Baby Agam Benipal, whose parents Preet and Harman moved to Perth from India, is seen during an Australia Day citizenship ceremony in the city of Waneroo, in Perth’s north, Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017. Wanneroo has hosted Australia’s largest citizenship ceremony for the fourth year running, with 800 residents from 49 countries becoming citizens. In total in WA, 2744 people became citizens on Thursday, with the top five countries of origin being the UK, South Africa, India, Ireland and the Philippines. Photograph: Rebecca Le May/AAP

6.58am GMT

Hottest 100: #40-31

This is the final Hottest 100 update on the blog today. We won’t be counting down the final 30 as the blog is about to close, but you can follow it on triple j’s website and stay tuned for our analysis in the morning

A fairly dude-heavy batch of songs brings us to the top 30 of this year’s poll, with two songs in a row from Brisbane band Dune Rats at #33 and #34, and the second spot for Sticky Fingers, who went on indefinite hiatus in December after a controversial year.

Of the 70 songs so far, only 15 have been performed by bands that feature women or by female solo artists, and seven more have featured women as vocalists. But there are a few more women expected to place higher than usual in the top ten this year.

One of them is self-taught 21-year-old Tash Sultana, who has just made her Hottest 100 debut with Notion at #32. But it’s her track Jungle, built around loop pedals and her powerful voice, which is expected to get her into the top ten. The video has been viewed over 1 million times.

Here’s #40-31:

#40: Kid Cudi – Surfin (Ft. Pharrell Williams)

#39: DMA’s – Step Up The Morphine

#38: Glass Animals – Youth

#37: Flume – Smoke & Retribution (Ft. Vince Staples/Kucka)

#36: Sticky Fingers – Sad Songs

#35: Client Liaison – World of our Love

#34: Dune Rats – Scott Green

#33: Dune Rats – Bullshit

#32: Tash Sultana – Notion

#31: Drake – One Dance (Ft. Wizkid/Kyla)

Updated at 6.58am GMT

6.40am GMT

June Mills, Larrakia elder,
June Mills says Australia’s national day should be celebrated on 3 June, the date the principle of terra nullius was overturned. Photograph: Jonny Weeks/The Guardian

This afternoon I sat down in Darwin, on Larrakia land, with Larrakia elder June Mills. She says changing the date is not enough.

“But it is a start of reality.

“If I was going to change the date it would be June the 3rd, which is the day when terra nullius was struck down. That’s a day worth celebrating. Because all the lies we’ve suffered from begin with terra nullius – that this was nobody’s land – which was a doozy.

“To me that’s the day, I know there are a lot of days being put up but to me that’s the day, when we smashed the lie that has been killing our people.”

But Mills recognised there was not majority support for changing the day yet, and said people weren’t going to go along with it until they were educated about Australia’s history and the impact it still had on Indigenous people and communities.

“People don’t know. But we’re only 3% of the population, we can’t do this job. It’s up to the government to really show leadership and sincerity, honesty about the reality of this country and tell the truth, put it in the schools. It’s not going to happen without education.”

Mills said there wouldn’t be enthusiasm about Australia Day from Indigenous people until this happened.

June Mills, Larrakia elder, in Darwin.
June Mills, Larrakia elder, in Darwin. Photograph: Jonny Weeks/The Guardian

Updated at 6.53am GMT

6.26am GMT

The newly appointed New South Wales premier, Gladys Berejiklian, would like people to not debate changing Australia Day on Australia Day.

Speaking to reporters after police and protesters clashed at the Invasion Day march in Sydney, Berejiklian said the violence was “disappointing”, and that while everyone had a right to protest, Australia Day was about unity.

“I’m so disappointed people couldn’t express themselves in a more appropriate way on such an important day,” she said.

AAP reported Berejiklian said there were 364 other days of the year to debate changing Australia’s national day.

It seems people were not listening, though.

The number of tweets mentioning #ChangeTheDate has grown 850% since 2016.

The number of Tweets using #InvasionDay grew 200% from 2014-2017.

The number of Tweets using #SurvivalDay grew 200% from 2014-2017.

Updated at 6.43am GMT

6.12am GMT

Belief is a thing you have when you don’t have actual facts.

If only there were some facts around for Pauline Hanson.

6.02am GMT

Hottest 100: #50-41

Violent Soho have become the first act to ever get four songs in the first half of the Hottest 100 countdown, and the Amity Affliction are still sitting pretty with three apiece. Safia, Dope Lemon, the Avalanches, DD Dumbo and Frank Ocean each have two. Like a Version has gotten a fairly good look-in so far too, with covers by Paces, Halsey and AB Original making the list.

The Indigenous hip-hop duo of Briggs and Trials, AB Original are expected to feature again later today, tipped for quite a high listing for their Australia Day protest track January 26, featuring Dan Sultan.

Late last year, as pressure mounted on Triple J to move the Hottest 100 to a date that was less divisive and offensive to Indigenous Australia, a Facebook page began circulating encouraging listeners to vote for the track in solidarity. It’ll be interesting to see how high the song places this year.

In other news, this could be one of the most commercially viable Hottest 100s of all time, with Beyoncé, Rihanna, Drake, Guy Sebastian and Kanye West all featuring so far – and a Justin Bieber cover thrown in to boot.

Here’s #50-41 – featuring Paul Kelly’s Hottest 100 comeback, after a break of 16 years.

#50: Gang of Youths – Strange Diseases

#49: Hilltop Hoods – Higher (Ft. James Chatburn)

#48: Kingswood – Creepin

#47: D.D Dumbo – Walrus

#46: Mac Miller – Dang! (Ft. Anderson .Paak)

#45: A.B. Original – Dumb Things (Ft. Paul Kelly/Dan Sultan)

#44: D.D Dumbo – Satan

#43: MØ – Final Song

#42: Broods – Heartlines

#41: The Weeknd – I Feel It Coming (Ft. Daft Punk)

Updated at 6.06am GMT

5.41am GMT

Good afternoon everyone, this is Helen Davidson checking in to take you through the rest of the afternoon.

I hope you have spent your day well, and if you’ve been somewhere a little out of the ordinary please share your pics on Twitter (@heldavidson).

In the mean time, down on Sydney’s famous Bondi beach, some lifeguards are having official pillow fights, which to be fair makes way less sense than the Darwin Ute Run which Guardian Australia’s Paul Farrell was so rude about earlier today.

Lifeguards on Bondi beach take part in a pillow fight challenge.
Lifeguards on Bondi beach take part in a pillow fight challenge. Photograph: Brook Mitchell/Getty Images

And then at the Tamworth Country Music Festival, Rebecca Matthews rugs up.

Rebecca Matthews from Lithgow poses for a photograph on Australia Day, at the Tamworth campgrounds, during the Tamworth Country Music Festival, in Tamworth, Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017.
Rebecca Matthews from Lithgow poses for a photograph on Australia Day at the Tamworth campgrounds during the Tamworth country music festival. Photograph: Dan Himbrechts/AAP

At the Australian Open in Melbourne people are sportingly patriotic as other people play tennis. Guardian mate Russell Jackson has filed this report on how the tennis is going.

Tennis fans arrive at Melbourne Park for the Australian Open on Thursday.
Tennis fans arrive at Melbourne Park for the Australian Open on Thursday. Photograph: Julian Smith/AAP

Updated at 5.44am GMT

5.19am GMT

That’s all from me on the live blog today. Stay with reporter Helen Davidson as she continues our coverage of Australia Day celebrations and protests, and the pointy end of the Hottest 100.

5.13am GMT

Hottest 100 halftime – the gender count so far

For the past few years, the Hottest 100 has been the springboard for an ongoing debate about gender and Triple J, with women vastly under-represented in the national poll and on the station’s playlist more broadly. In last year’s poll, the only women who made the top 10 were featured vocalists, and only 24 songs were by women – with four of them by Courtney Barnett. In 2014, of the 273 musicians featured in the countdown, only 34 were women.

As Erin Riley pointed out on Twitter and in a subsequent piece for Guardian Australia, in the history of the Hottest 100, more men from St Kevin’s College had won the poll than women.

This year could be different. Although no women featured in the top 10 of the station’s 2016 album poll, women are expected to make a much stronger showing in this year’s Hottest 100, with Amy Shark and Tash Sultana both predicted for the top 5 – and Shark has a chance at the #1 spot.

Amy Shark, Tash Sultana andJessica Cerro (AKA Montaigne
(L-R) Amy Shark, Tash Sultana andJessica Cerro (AKA Montaigne) are all expected to score high in the Triple J Hottest 100. Composite: PR Company Handouts

But we’ve been tallying the women count so far, and of the 50 songs that make up the first half of the poll, only 12 are performed by women artists or bands which feature women, with a further five featuring women vocalists.

Here’s #60-51. For the rest, click on this.

#60: Sofi Tukker – Drinkee

#59: Frank Ocean – Solo

#58: Ali Barter – Girlie Bits

#57: Catfish and the Bottlemen – Twice

#56: Paces – Keeping Score (Ft. Guy Sebastian) (Like A Version)

#55: Rufus – Say a Prayer for me

#54: Blink-182 – Bored To Death

#53: Violent Soho – Blanket

#52: Halsey – Love Yourself (Like A Version)

#51: Sticky Fingers – Outcast At Last

Read Erin Riley’s piece on gender, privilege and the Hottest 100:

Updated at 5.21am GMT

5.12am GMT

We’ve got a bit more detail to hand about the scuffle between protesters and police at the Sydney Invasion Day march earlier today. The clashes reportedly began after protesters attempted to burn a flag. Police say they tried to extinguish the flames.

Footage shows police officers and protesters shoving each other. Police later arrested a 20-year-old man and took him to Redfern police station, while a police officer and a woman were injured and taken to hospital.

5.03am GMT

Martin Parkinson, the nation’s most senior public servant, was made a companion of the Order of Australia for eminent service to the community. My colleague Gareth Hutchens has this story on Parkinson, his career, his push to modernise the economy, and his warning that young Australian adults could be the first generation in modern history with living standards below those of their parents.

4.56am GMT

Reporter Paul Karp has filed this story on deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce’s comments on the Australia Day protests. Joyce said he was tired of people “weeping” about Australia Day when they lived in a nation that was democratic, has free education, basic free health, is well defended, and that looks after its poor.

Joyce had this to say about the protesters:

Today is a day about celebration. I’m just sick of these people who every time they want to make us feel guilty about it. They don’t like Christmas, they don’t like Australia Day, they’re just miserable … and I wish they’d crawl under a rock and hide for a little bit.

Updated at 5.00am GMT

4.45am GMT

The large Captain Cook statue in Cairns was redecorated for a short time this morning. It comes after a recent proposal by local Indigenous artist, Norman Miller, for a giant boomerang to be constructed and placed in the statue’s hand, according to the Cairns Post.

Updated at 4.56am GMT

4.33am GMT

At the speakout tent at Yabun festival, Rhoda Roberts – head of Indigenous programming at the Sydney Opera House – introduced Bruce Pascoe, author of Dark Emu: a book that challenges the understanding that precolonial Aboriginal Australians were hunter-gatherers who lived off the land.

Pascoe said this had been taught to suit European settlers’ purposes. Indigenous people’s perspectives were not heard in public discourse, said Roberts, “unless it’s something specific that’s about land rights”.

Asked why his and other Aboriginal people’s viewpoints were not sought on other issues relating to land management, such as climate change, Pascoe said:

“Because it takes a long time to unlearn 220 years of bullshit.

“Because everyone, including me went to school and learned that Aboriginal people were wanderers of the Earth, children of nature … The reason for that wasn’t because it was true but because the Europeans needed to tell that story, to justify taking the land.”

In Dark Emu, Pascoe writes that precolonial Aboriginal people across Australia were using domesticated plants, sowing, harvesting, irrigating and storing – all of which are inconsistent with the hunter-gatherer tag.

He told the sizeable crowd that the curriculum and the “kind of nonsense” taught in schools had not changed to reflect this new information.

Updated at 4.35am GMT

4.24am GMT

Hottest 100 catch-up time!

We’re 40 songs in and there’s been a few noteworthy placements so far. Violent Soho have scored three listings, at #93, #73 and #69. So have Australian metalcore act Amity Affliction at #76, #67 and #65 – with the latter following on from Beyoncé’s Hottest 100 debut for Hold Up, making for a particularly abrasive genre transition.

Glass Animals, Safia, Angus Stone’s new project Dope Lemon and the Avalanches have had two entries apiece, with Drake (featuring Rihanna), Kanye West, Radiohead, Empire of the Sun and Frank Ocean also appearing.

Flume has had his first showing at #95 – but it certainly won’t be his last, with the Sydney producer expected by many to win for his track Never Be Like You.

The countdown so far:

#100: Birds of Tokyo – Brace

#99: Drake – Too Good (Ft. Rihanna)

#98: Glass Animals – Season 2 Episode 3

#97: Alex Lahey – You Don’t Think You Like People Like Me

#96: Elk Road – Hanging By A Thread (Ft. Natalie Foster)

#95: Flume – Lose It (Ft. Vic Mensa)

#94: Vallis Alps – Fading

#93: Empire of the Sun – High and Low

#92: Violent Soho – How to Taste

#91: The Avalanches – Subways

#90: Luca Brasi – Anything Near Conviction

#89: Safia – Over You

#88: Childish Gambino – Me and Your Mama

#87: Dope Lemon – Uptown Folks

#86: Bliss N Eso – Dopamine (Ft. Thief)

#85: Safia – My Love Is Gone

#84: Frank Ocean – Pink + White

#83: Tkay Maidza – Simulation

#82: Thundamentals – Think About It (Ft. Peta & The Wolves)

#81: Desiigner – Panda

#80: Banks – Gemini Feed

#79: Radiohead – Burn The Witch

#78: Vera Blue – Settle

#77: Catfish & The Bottlemen – Soundcheck

#76: The Amity Affliction – This Could Be Heartbreak

#75: The Avalanches – Because I’m Me

#74: Camp Cope – Lost: Season One

#73: Violent Soho – No Shade

#72: Kanye West – Famous

#71: Broods – Free

#70: Golden Features – Wolfie (Ft. Julia Stone)

#69: Violent Soho – So Sentimental

#68: L D R U – Next To You (Ft. Savoi)

#67: The Amity Affliction – I Bring The Weather With Me

#66: Beyoncé – Hold Up

#65: The Amity Affliction – All Fucked Up

#64: Maggie Rogers – Alaska

#63: Glass Animals – Life Itself

#62: Dope Lemon – Marinade

#61: King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard – Gamma Knife

Updated at 5.33am GMT

4.21am GMT

This can only end well.

Picture of group on makeshift raft.
A group of people float on a makeshift raft as they celebrate Australia Day along the Yarra River in Melbourne. Photograph: David Gray/Reuters

Updated at 4.29am GMT

4.14am GMT

The crowds, and the flags, were out in force for Melbourne’s Australia Day parade on Swanston Street. The parade is a warming display of Australia’s cultural diversity. Participants from more than 90 community and cultural groups were involved.

Images of Melbourne’s Australia Day parade on Swanston Street.
Images of Melbourne’s Australia Day parade on Swanston Street.
Images of Melbourne’s Australia Day parade on Swanston Street.
Images of Melbourne’s Australia Day parade on Swanston Street.

4.04am GMT

Beyoncé has made her Triple J Hottest 100 debut at #66 with Hold Up, the third single off her game-changing sixth record Lemonade. The visual album, released with an accompanying film of clips, is jam-packed with discourse on race, gender and infidelity, and was lauded by the Guardian as the best album of 2016.

After the Taylor Swift/Hottest 100 furore of 2015, Triple J’s decision to add Beyoncé’s album to high rotation was a controversial one, which led to six songs being up for nomination in this year’s poll.

Triple J listeners are reacting as expected: split right down the middle.

Read Observer pop critic Kitty Empire’s review of Lemonade here:

Updated at 4.20am GMT

4.02am GMT

Our photographer Jonny Weeks is in the Top End, and took these shots of the Darwin ute muster at the Hidden Valley Drag Strip.

Ute muster at Hidden Valley Drag Strip in Darwin, Australia.
Ute muster at Hidden Valley Drag Strip in Darwin, Australia.
Ute muster at Hidden Valley Drag Strip in Darwin, Australia.

3.52am GMT

We’ve delved into the archives for this one. Here’s one of the earliest mentions in the Observer of the fledgling colony of New South Wales from 22 April 1792. The Observer, sister paper of the Guardian and the world’s oldest Sunday paper, was founded just three years after the settlement in New South Wales.

Observer article.
observer Photograph: supplied

Here are the tall ships sailing into Sydney Harbour on Thursday.

Image of tall ships.

Updated at 4.17am GMT

3.43am GMT

Sydney’s Invasion Day march eventually worked its way up Broadway to Victoria Park in Sydney for Yabun festival: the biggest one-day celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures in Australia.

At 2pm, Victoria Park was packed with families and groups of friends enjoying the warm weather, food stalls and music and dance performances. A tent set aside for elders, with seating and refreshments, and another for activities for children, reflected the all-ages environment.

Local organisations such as the Redfern Community Centre and larger bodies such as the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence and Amnesty International were not only represented, but being accessed by festival-goers.

With many people wearing the Aboriginal flag on their person, or T-shirts bearing slogans like “Grand Theft Australia” and “I See Deadly People”, the atmosphere was relaxed but engaged, and political – evidenced nowhere better than at the “speakout tent” of panel discussions.

At 2pm it was packed with people listening to group of elders, one of a number of discussions held throughout the day. One speaker encouraged the crowd, if they wanted to know something, to just ask.

Every Indigenous community had its customs and history, he said, singling out differences between “the saltwater mob and the freshwater mob”.

“One shoe will not fit the other foot … In our culture, you ask the questions, you get the answers.”

Updated at 4.00am GMT

3.32am GMT

Speaking of the bizarre, Brisbane’s Story Bridge Hotel surely takes the cake for the oddest Australia Day event. It’s holding cockroach races, for reasons that escape me entirely. The pub’s hotel offers this by way of enticement:

And of course the iconic Cockroach Races! The first race scurries off at 12noon, launching a jam-packed program of 14 races, including a steeple chase. Read our race rules so you can be prepared for this awesome day and take part for your chance at victory. The last race is around 4.30pm and the music and fun continues into the evening.

Fittingly for this elite sporting event, we create dedicated stadium seating and even corporate boxes to watch the races in style!

Updated at 3.37am GMT

3.22am GMT

One of the more unusual events to take place on Australia Day. Dogs and their owners, including Ashley and her dog Muffin, pictured here, race for glory on stand-up paddleboards at Watsons Bay, Sydney.

Pic of dog and stand up paddle board race.

Updated at 3.29am GMT

3.02am GMT

Sydney’s Invasion Day march has again brought a sizeable crowd this year. This shot from Mike Bowers shows the rally heading into Broadway before 2pm.

Image of the Sydney Invasion Day march.

Shots are also starting to filter in from other Invasion Day marches across the country. Here’s the Brisbane march:

Invasion Day march in Brisbane

And Canberra:

Invasion Day rally in Canberra

And the latest images from the huge crowds rallying in Melbourne.

Invasion Day rally in Melbourne

Updated at 3.32am GMT

2.56am GMT

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has been kept busy at the official Australia Day proceedings in Canberra.

Images from Australia Day events in Canberra.
Lucy and Malcolm Turnbull and senator Zed Seselja throw some sangers on the barbie at Canberra’s Nara Park. Photograph: Daniel McCulloch/AAP
Images from Australia Day events in Canberra.
A member of the Choir of Hard Knocks speaks to the prime minister at an Australia Day citizenship ceremony in Canberra. Photograph: Mick Tsikas/AAP
Images from Australia Day events in Canberra.
Turnbull at a citizenship ceremony and flag-raising event in Canberra. Photograph: Mick Tsikas/AAP
Images from Australia Day events in Canberra.
Pavarotti eat your heart out. Photograph: Mick Tsikas/AAP

Updated at 3.06am GMT

2.41am GMT

Triple J’s Hottest 100 is 20 tracks in already. Thundamentals, Frank Ocean and Childish Gambino have all made appearances, as has Canberra act Safia, which has songs at number 85 and 89 in the countdown.

Updated at 3.14am GMT

2.28am GMT

There are reports of violence breaking out at the Invasion Day rally in Sydney. This vision shows scuffles between police and protesters.

2.25am GMT

The Invasion Day rally in Melbourne is now winding down. My colleague Calla Wahlquist is using the last of her phone battery to bring us some final vision.

2.22am GMT

An inflammatory Geelong Advertiser column, which we highlighted earlier this morning, appears to have been edited.

2.15am GMT

Guardian Australia photographer Mike Bowers has filed some more images from the Invasion Day rally in Sydney.

The march heads out of Redfern towards the city
The march heads out of Redfern towards the city. Photograph: Mike Bowers/The Guardian
Image of Invasion Day Rally, Sydney
Image of Invasion Day Rally, Sydney

Updated at 2.21am GMT

2.00am GMT

I’m handing over our continuing live coverage of the protests, honours and events occurring across Australia today to my colleague Chris Knaus.

We’re continuing our live coverage throughout the day with reporters at protests on the ground across the country.

1.58am GMT

My colleague Paul Karp has just sent through this latest update from Canberra:

The opposition leader, Bill Shorten, has addressed the date of Australia Day at a citizenship ceremony in Brimbank.

There’s a bit of a controversy: should Australia Day be today? Whatever one’s view about the date of Australia Day, I think we can all agree that we should remember our first Australians for whom this day actually carries some sadness.

The people whose ancestors saw the ghost-white strangers perform their strange rituals and raise their curious flag not knowing, on that Australia Day in 1788, what that moment would foretell to the first Australians: disease, dispossession and all too often death.

Too many long years of injuries and indignities, great and small.

So today, on Australia Day we honour them – and every day – the guardians of this ancient continent, the keepers of the world’s oldest living culture, our first Australians.

Updated at 2.18am GMT

1.57am GMT

My colleague Calla Wahlquist has been reporting from the Melbourne Invasion Day protests. Here are a few more of her updates from the event.

Updated at 2.07am GMT

1.55am GMT

Here are a couple more updates from the Invasion Day march in Sydney, which has reached the city.

Updated at 2.03am GMT

1.54am GMT

Sydney Festival’s first Indigenous artistic director speaks out about Australia Day

Sydney’s 26 January events fall at the tail-end of Sydney festival this year – and for the first time in its history, the festival is helmed by an Indigenous artistic director, Wesley Enoch.

Although a member of the NSW Australia Day council, Enoch is outspoken about the date of the national day – at least as we now experience it. “The date is contentious and needs to change,” he told Guardian Australia on Wednesday. “[It’s] an insult, an irritation, a celebration of colonialism … but this year, the date hasn’t changed – so what are you going to do?”

Enoch’s response has been to weave new rituals into Sydney’s Australia Day programming, including Baraya: Sing Up Country – a new song in Darug and Eora local languages, which was taught to the public and performed at the WugulOra ceremony at Barangaroo this morning.

We talk about commemorating Anzac Day, not celebrating it … whereas Australia Day still seems to be about fireworks, draping yourself in the flag, parking a warship in Sydney Harbour – a whole range of things that are somehow without ceremony. And that’s what annoys me more than anything else: that [most of us] don’t actually know what the day means.

Holding a national day on 26 January presents a unique opportunity for discourse and discussion which, up until now “really hasn’t been taken up”, he says – and moving it could risk losing that platform. “In 100 years from now, if we move it, do we stop talking about our colonial history? The date is such an irritation and an annoyance to me personally, but what it does is make me talk about it.”

He’s not the only one. Each year the issue of how we mark 26 January seems to arise with more force and volume than the year before, and Enoch points to the example of Fremantle council’s attempt to move the date of its citizenship ceremony to show that things could be changing.

“There might come a point where we actually surprise ourselves, and are able to transform this day,” Enoch says, illustrating his point with a story by the Indigenous writer Ambelin Kwaymullina:

There’s the story of the crow that drinks from the waterhole. The crow goes to the waterhole, and the water levels are too low. And he picks up one stone and drops it in, and the water level rises a little bit. Every time the crow drops a stone in, the water level rises and rises, until eventually you can drink. This is that story.

After a decade or two decades or even more of discussion, [the issue of Australia Day] has got such a public airing that maybe change is possible. Who knows?

Updated at 2.06am GMT

1.47am GMT

The world champion Australian surfer Mick Fanning is one of the many Australians appointed to the Order of Australia this year. Here’s how he reacted when he heard the news.

Updated at 1.52am GMT

1.42am GMT

Every year on Australia Day the great city of Darwin has a “ute run”. I don’t really understand why they do this, but here are some photos of large cars driving around Darwin if you’re into that sort of thing.

Personally, if I had the day off I would prefer to go see La La Land than ogle utes but maybe that’s just me.

1.39am GMT

And more now from my colleague Calla Wahlquist, who is on the ground at the Invasion Day rally in Melbourne.

Updated at 1.51am GMT

1.38am GMT

Here’s a video of the prime minister Malcolm Turnbull’s Australia Day video message:

Malcolm Turnbull’s 2017 Australia Day message

1.28am GMT

Back on to the subject of music, and some Australian artists have come together to make a call to change the date of Australia Day in their own way.

My colleague Steph Harmon has this take on the musical collaboration between 12 Australian hip-hop artists:

Twelve Australian hip-hop artists have collaborated on a new track calling for Australia Day to be moved, and released it with a 360-degree video in partnership with the Indigenous TV channel NITV.

The track – which features the Herd’s Ozi Batla and Urthboy, L-Fresh the Lion, Hau of Koolism as well as the Indigenous hip-hop artists Kaylah Truth, Nooky, Birdz (Nathan Bird) and Tasman Keith, alongside Tuka and Jeswon of Thundamentals and Erica and Sally of Coda Conduct – gives voice to a growing campaign to move Australia Day from 26 January.

Updated at 1.31am GMT

1.23am GMT

The Invasion Day march in Sydney is beginning to move from the Block in Redfern through to Hyde Park.

Updated at 1.28am GMT

1.21am GMT

My colleague Paul Karp in Canberra has just sent through this short update from Malcolm Turnbull on the possibility of moving Australia Day:

The prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, has commented on proposals to move Australia Day from 26 January at an Australia Day barbecue with Zed Seselja in Canberra.

“I believe we should maintain the date,” he said. “Everyone is entitled to a point of view but I think most Australians accept January 26 as Australia Day.

“It is a day where we celebrate the rich diversity of all of our cultures from that from our first Australians as we saw, with Tina’s beautiful welcome to country on behalf of her people, the Ngunnawal people of this region here in the Canberra area, and to the new citizens, migrants who come from such diverse range of countries.”

Updated at 2.17am GMT

1.16am GMT

Triple J hottest 100 countdown begins

For the music lovers out there the Triple J Hottest 100 has just kicked off.

Birds of Tokyo, Drake and Glass Animals have started the countdown, which will descend from 100 to one as the day goes on.

Listen in on the ABC here.

Updated at 1.26am GMT

1.06am GMT

Thanks for following along with our coverage of 26 January so far. I’m handing over to my colleague Paul Farrell now – you can share with him your views and news at @FarrellPF on Twitter.

12.59am GMT

Paul Daley writes of the calls to change the date:

If Australia Day is genuinely intended as a day of national unity and pride, then it must be so as a result of a process of truth and conciliation. We are not there yet. Not nearly. We won’t be until sovereignty is settled with treaties.

So, for the time being it remains a divisive and divided day – Invasion Day for an increasingly growing multitude of black and white Australians, a moment of profound, often ostentatious, sometimes aggressive, exclusive, nationalism for others.

Updated at 1.08am GMT

12.57am GMT

The Melbourne march has stopped at the corner of Bourke and Exhibition streets in Melbourne.

In Sydney, protesters are hearing from speakers.

A Muslim Australian family have also shown solidarity.

12.53am GMT

A pairing of headlines on the Age makes a neat point about Australia Day, says writer Marcia Langton on Twitter.

Updated at 1.07am GMT

12.50am GMT

The Indigenous Social Justice Association’s banner at the Invasion Day rally in Sydney: “If I were to die in police custody, know this … I did not commit suicide.”

Deaths of Indigenous people in custody have been under scrutiny owing to the coronial inquiry into the death of Ms Dhu. The findings, handed down in mid-December, stopped short of apportioning blame but chastised “unprofessional and inhumane” treatment of police officers and failures of key medical staff.

Days later, ISJA in Sydney staged a protest to call for a similar investigation into the death of David Dungay Jr, who died while being treated for a medical condition at Long Bay prison a year ago.

On New Year’s Day the former Indigenous affairs minister Robert Tickner used the release of the 1992-93 cabinet documents to urge leaders to “command the authority of the nation” to improve Indigenous incarceration rates.

Updated at 1.07am GMT

12.42am GMT