Delay in debating documents irks villages

The National, Thursday July 7th, 2016

SIX Ahi villages in Lae are unhappy with the Morobe assembly for not being able to deliberate on boundary documents to determine the future of Greater Ahi if it has to become a district.
The provincial boundary committee (MPBRC) submitted a document to the provincial executive council to discuss and endorse a debate in the first assembly from June 28-30.
However, the report was shelved and this frustrated the Ahi villagers from Yanga, Wagang, Butibam, Hengali, Kamkumung and Yalu.
MPBRC Ahi representative Kwalam Tangapi said pressure was building from respective clans in the six Ahi villages over the failure by the assembly to debate the document. “The submission was purely a boundary demarcation report that justifies the overlapping wards of Ahi-Nawaeb Urban and Lae-Wampar Urban, nothing sinister involving politics of the Lae city commission (LCC) issue,” Tangapi said.
However, deputy governor Judas Nalau told the National that the documents were rejected as more work needed to be done before it could be debated.
Nalau was unable to disclose specific requirements needed to be added or taken off by the MPBRC before the document could be endorsed.
Tangapi said all investments for the Lae-Nadzab urban development plan (LNUDP) 2016-2025 and beyond would occur on customary land of Ahi and the Wampar people.
“This was the first step to bring all Ahi landowners together, likely to become a district of its own sooner if the document is endorsed by the tutumang and approved by the National Executive Council (NEC)” Tangapi said.
He said development activities also applied pressure on landowners as companies were unable to allow ample time for landowners to mobilise themselves to survey and register customary lands to have incorporated land group (ILG) certificates and land titles.
“Having a Ahi district administration office will see to all landowner matters rather than depending on Lae district” Tangapi said.