NEWS

TLTB Clarifies Lease Terms After Roadside Protest

The iTaukei land Trust Board has clarified the status of a development lease after a roadside protest by placard-carrying Tamavua villagers along Princes Road yesterday. Villagers claim that despite consultations
19 Dec 2018 11:04
TLTB Clarifies Lease Terms After Roadside Protest
Tamavua Villagers, Pailato Radibi (from left), Tokalima Naibuka and Matia Tubamasi of Tamavua Viillage protest with placards on the roadside against land leased by NLTB on December 18, 2018. Photo: Ronald Kumar.

The iTaukei land Trust Board has clarified the status of a development lease after a roadside protest by placard-carrying Tamavua villagers along Princes Road yesterday.

Villagers claim that despite consultations the TLTB issued the lease for a developer to start building houses on a piece of land. TLTB chief executive officer Tevita Kuruvakadua said the lease in question of the protest was a development lease “issued to Tamsville Limited, a company owned by Ratu Kalokalo Loki and has shares for Yavusa Matanikutu and Village Church”.

Tamavua Village land development committee chairman Kaminieli Tunisau had claimed that despite the consultations with the committee, the TLTB issued the lease to a man who had engaged developers and started building houses.

“The reason for this protest is they (TLTB) had conducted consultations regarding the land and they issued lease to one of the village men,” Mr Tunisau said.

“We had questioned them when and who gave the consent for the land to be dereserved because we were not aware of it. We raised questions because there was only one applicant for the lease. But we wanted the people of the village to benefit from that piece of land.

“If the lease is given to one person, he is the only one benefiting from it. It is the Yavusa Matanikutu of Tamavua and Yavusa Nayavu- mata of Suvavou land, which means it does not belong to the mataqali or a person,” Mr Tunisau said.

Mr Kuruvakadua said before issuing the development lease, TLTB undertook three sets of consultation held at the Tamavua Village hall. The land was outside reserve and the Yavusa agreed to the lease being issued to Ratu Ka- lokalo’s company, named Tamsville Limited.

“As far as TLTB is concerned, it had followed all due processes before it issued the lease to Tamsville Limited. The lease is a development lease and non transferrable until the tenant has fully developed the lease according to the purpose it was issued for.

The development lease is for a 10-year period, effective from January 1, 2018.

“Once the land is fully developed, a certified 99-year lease will be issued. Also, at that point in time, another 10 per cent premium will charged to the tenant and paid to the landowners.

“The duty of the tenant issued with a development lease is to see that the land is developed within the development period. So in this case, Tamsville Limited may have hired Gold Rock to develop the land, similar to what all other tenants of development leases are expected to do in order to fulfil the conditions of the development lease issued to them,” Mr Kuruvakadua said.

Police Chief Operations Officer Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Maretino Qiolevu said a team of officers from the Samabula Police Station were deployed to the scene and advised those protesting to follow the legal channels to resolve their grievances and not take matters into their own hands.

This was after the group of people were taken to the Samabula Police Station.

“Community Policing officers were also deployed to the scene.

“We took this step for the sake of maintaining safety and security of the community,” ACP Qiolevu said.

The Fiji Sun tried to get a comment from Ratu Kalokalo, but was unsuccessful. His mobile phone was diverted and he was not at home when a journalist went to get a comment from him.

Edited by Epineri Vula

Feedback: ashna.kumar@fijisun.com.fj

Fiji Sun Instagram
Fiji Plus
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
error: