Archive for the ‘land issues’ Category

Seruiratu’s agricultural dream

October 17, 2014

In his maiden speech, the new Agriculture minister, Inia Seruiratu, has painted a rosy picture of what he’s going to do to boost agricultural output but he should have started with the facts of how much agricultural output has declined under Bainimarama. Rice went from 14370 tonnes a year in 2007 to 7914 tonnes in 2011. The Bureau of stats have published no new figures for the years after that. Goat production has slumped from 969 tonnes to 134 tonnes. Copra and coca have almost disappeared altogether. Most agricultural products have shrunk, with chicken and egg production the only products to have increased and kept pace with population growth. And this is because all the people who used to like beef and goat every now and then can no longer afford the luxury.

Fijilive October 16, 2014 Unlock potential, reduce import bills: Seruiratu

Either Ratu Joji doesn’t know or …

September 11, 2014

Bainimarama is always saying how stupid we re to follow our chief but then the propaganda machine enlists the name of Ratu Joji Cakobau. The Sun quotes Ratu Joji as saying “all iTaukei land deposited in the land bank was safe and would returned when the lease expired”. Maybe, but it could be gone for 99 years and if the rent was low or no-one paid it, it means the land is being stolen a century at a time. The Sun quotes Ratu Joji as saying “land in the Land bank were deposited only after the consent of the landowners”. This  is true now but Khaiyum’s decree has given Bainimarama the power to make whatever rules he wants. He can remove landowner approval tomorrow if he chooses. Either Ratu Joji doesn’t know what’s in the LUD or words are being put in his mouth.

Most in the dark about land

September 1, 2014

The Fiji Times Tebbutt poll has found that the great majority of voters think that land is a very important issue in the upcoming election but only half of voters think they understand what’s at stake.  This shows us what’s wrong with the Bainimarama regime.

Fiji Times 30 August 2014 Majority want to know more about land

Why is over $6 million sitting in the Frank Bank?

August 29, 2014

The TLTB has admitted it’s hanging on to $6 million of landowners funds. Over 2.5 million of this belongs to landowners in Bua, Macuata and Cakaudrove, all strongholds of SODELPA. The useless puppet, Qetaki, claims this is because the landowners have not set up trust funds and appointed trustees as required by the unelected government but who asked them to change the distribution system? It’s typical Bainimarama that he wants to reduce landowners to begging for their own money.  He talks about accountability but he has failed to give landowners a proper account of how much money has been collected as rent for each mataqali and how much is in arrears.  He just doesn’t understand: it’s not his money.

Fiji Times August 29 2014  $2.5 million held back

Khaiyum counting on iTaukei being dumb

July 23, 2014

Without consolidation into a continuous block with beachfront Denarau would be pockets of mangrove of no use to developers

Khaiyum’s claim that he has protected iTaukei land ownership better than before is based on his claim that he has banned land swaps like the one at Denarau. Under this swap small parcels of native were swapped for Crown land. This was done so that there would be viable sites for tourism to be leased to developers. Ratu Timoci Vesikula has explained all this in the Fiji Live report on the link below. As a result of this swap the NLTB were able to “put all native lands together on a beachfront”. Without the swap Narewa landowners would have had scattered plots of mangrove rather than a consolidated block with beachfront on which hotels could be built.  Khaiyum hopes this will be too hard for iTaukei minds to get around, no doubt assuming that everyone would have as much trouble following at his so-called ‘boss’. Denarau has brought a lot of money to Narewa landowners and this is what Khaiyum would outlaw in the name of protecting their land rights. Denarau is a good example of development where everyone benefits. Landowners get good rent and Nadi has a magnet drawing tourists and giving jobs to a lot of people from Nadi, not just in Denarau but all around the area.

Fijilive July 23, 2014 Why we changed land ownership: Rt Timoci

Is this Frank’s new lease distribution system at work?

July 18, 2014

Landowners in the vanua o Nakovacake in Nadi have complained about the distribution of lease money. The new system was introduced by Bainimarama as one of his ‘reforms’, which means it was done without any consultation for the simple reason of cutting chiefs out the picture. Bainimarama had to do this to show whose boss but he had no idea what problems it would lead to. All the useless stooge TLTB manager, Alipate Qetaki, can say is “they were following a structured and deliberate process to attempt to resolve issues raised by some landowners”. Qetaki added :”TLTB will not comment further as it is now formulating its report and submission to its chairman and board of trustees. ” In other words, he’s a useless puppet who has to wait to be told what to do and Khaiyum hasn’t yet made up Bainimarama’s mind for him.

Fiji Times, July 18, 2014 Probe on complaint

The land swap lie

July 17, 2014

Bainimarama told villagers in Serua that his Government has safe-guarded native land by banning its sale. Once again he referred to the Denarau and Momi land swaps, calling these land sales.  The truth is native land was swapped with Crown land, which then became native land, to enable the landowners to have a more valuable piece of land to lease. The landowners gained new native land to get a more valuable property for development. Bainimarama could undo all the swaps that have been made and restore the situation before the swap.  He has shown he can make whatever laws he likes. So why doesn’t he do this? It’s because he  would have to compensate landowners for the loss this caused them.
Radio Fiji Jul 16, 2014 2013 constitution protects iTaukei interests: PM

Has Dr Luveni actually read the Land Use decree?

July 16, 2014

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Does Dr Luveni think free sewing machines from China are enough to convince iTaukei voters to hand total control over their land to Bainimarama and Khaiyum?

Fiji First Family Minister Jiko Luveni told landowners that the Land Use Decree requires 60% approval by landowners before land can be handed out by Bainimarama. What Dr Luveni did not say is that landowners have NO RIGHT to appeal to the court if they believe the Land Use Unit has not followed the correct procedure in getting landowner approval.  If the Land Use Unit says the landowners approve handing the land to the state, the landowners cannot dispute this in court. Bainimarama’s word on what landowners approve is law.  What’s worse, the Land Use Decree actually makes no mention of landowner approval.  The 60% approval rule is in the Land Use Regulations which can be changed overnight by the PM without the approval of Parliament. Dr Luveni either doesn’t know what she’s talking about or she’s lying. All of this was explained on Fiji Today by Navosavakadua.  All people who want to know the facts should click on the link below and see the facts for themselves. At all future campaign meetings Dr Luveni should be asked to give landowners a copy of both the Land Use Decree and the Land Use Regulations.

 

Navosavakadua Lies versus facts on land

Fiji Sun 15, July  2014  CAMPAIGN TRAIL – Land Use Tops Agenda for Dr Luveni

 

Two reports, two versions of the land issue

July 11, 2014

askitaukeiniqele

The Land Use Decree gives total control of Native Land for 99 years to the PM to hand out as he likes and landowners cannot appeal to the court system for review

 

The Fiji Sun has a report of a visit to Nakorovou Rewa by former PM Qarase, while the Fiji Times has a report of Bainimarama’s visit to Dreketi Primary School in Rewa.There was not much detail on what was discussed but it seems Bainimarama said, as usual, your land is safe. But Qarase nailed the real issue, the Land Use Decree, which he said is “very dangerous”. It’s good to see the Fiji Sun recognising that SODELPA exists and is campaigning strongly but they seem to have left out all the detail. The Land Use decree is dangerous because it gives total power over leasing of land for up to 99 years to the PM with no right of appeal to the court over any decisions he makes. And it says the PM should give equal weight to the interests of the economy as to the interests of the landowners. Whatever the reports in the media say, the truth will be told and SODELPA has on its side the truth. Bainimarama must be made to explain word by word what is in the Land Use Decree and if he won’t SODELPA is there to do it for him.

Fiji Sun July 11, 2014 | Qarase Joins Campaign Team
http://www.fijisun.com.fj/?p=220974

Fiji Times, July 11, 2014 PM gives assurance on land issue
http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?id=274022

Khaiyum to the rescue with Nausori airport

June 11, 2014

In another outing as Acting PM Khaiyum has stepped in to seal the deal with landowners for the extension of Nausori airport.  Apparently he’s going to offer them some kind of deal for development of land around the airport. – “we want to help them in terms of developing the land around the airport”.  His triumph as negotiator on native land deals is getting a fanfare from his brother’s Radio Regime but let’s hope that Khaiyum at least knows what Province he’s in when he negotiates the deal.  Radio Regime is under the impression that the village of Naselai is in Rewa, not Tailevu.

Radio Fiji 10 June 2014  More discussions on expansion of Nausori Airport