Landowners: Land given without consent

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama (middle) after the Government Grant Scheme for iTaukei Land Development groundbreaking ceremony at Vuda, Lautoka. Picture: BALJEET SINGH

A landowning unit of Viseisei in Vuda has claimed their land was given to a new investor without their consent.

During a talanoa session with the Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama in Lautoka recently, the landowners claimed the new owners of the leased land were given the land without consultations with the traditional owners.

They said in 2013, a portion of their land was given by the former tenant, who had an agriculture lease, to another investor.

“From our understanding of the TLTB Act, tenants have to be given a one-year grace period before the lease expires.

“When we went to TLTB to inquire about that land in 2014, we found out that the land had already been leased to a new tenant.

“None of us knew about this nor were we informed about it. We did not give our consent, too, for this handover.”

TLTB north west region manager Soloveni Masi confirmed the lease had been given to a new tenant.

He said they would look into the issue to determine if the land could be returned to the landowning unit. T

he PM said it didn’t reflect too well on the TLTB to have issues of land leases being given without landowner consent.

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