Residents Query Land Owners

Nanuku Settlement residents at Vatuwaqa, Suva, want to know the rightful owner of the land they had been living in for years. The issue was raised during the Central Division
12 Jul 2015 12:09
Residents Query Land Owners
Consultations at Nanuku settlement yesterday

Nanuku Settlement residents at Vatuwaqa, Suva, want to know the rightful owner of the land they had been living in for years.

The issue was raised during the Central Division Public Consultation at the settlement yesterday.

The consultation was conducted by the Ministry of Finance through the Department of Strategic Planning and National Development for the formulation of five-year and 20-year development plans.

Nanuku residents claimed they could not access proper electricity and water supply because of land ownership problems.

They claim they do not know the rightful landowner.

Sandip Kumar, Ministry of Finance senior economic planning officer, said for electricity and water to be supplied to the area, respective authorities needed the landowner’s consent.

“The problem is that these people in Nanuku area do not know who the landowner is,” Mr Kumar said.

Few people have stood up and claimed that the land belonged to them, but many residents did not believe them.

“The issue is to find out who is the owner and incorporate this issue into our development plan and see how the Government can facilitate electricity and water access.”

Similar concerns were raised at the Wailea Settlement Church hall where it was heard that Tui Suva owned the land.

“After some discussion it was found that the landowner of Wailea is Tui Suva and the Roko Tui Rewa has emailed other counterparts,” Mr Kumar said.

“We will do the same with Nanuku Settlement, check with the Lands Department, search for this area and we will know who the actual owner of this land is.”


Resident wishes for basic necessities

Muanivatu Dream Kindergarten teacher, Shakuntala Devi has been living at Nanuku Settlement for 14 years. She said their biggest concern was getting electricity and water.

“Together with that we have road and transportation issues since we are living in a squatter area,” Mrs Devi said.

“This issue was also raised during the election campaigns and we are still waiting and hoping that improvements will be done in due time.”

She said during heavy rain, the settlement road would be difficult to use.

“We have children going to school and vehicles coming in and out. When it rains, the road is very bad.”


No turnout at MGM

It came as a surprise to consultation officials when no one turned up at Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Primary School yesterday morning.

“This is something we didn’t anticipate,” Mr Kumar said.

The consultation in the Central Division, especially within Suva, recorded low turnouts.

“I have been here at MGM for two hours, but no participant came. This is a problem because when something goes wrong, people come up and start pointing fingers, but when there are consultations they don’t seem interested to come out,” Mr Kumar said.

“Consultations are best time for people to come out and share their concerns because there are ground level issues and we want to actually hear it from the people.”



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