More claims for NCD land

National, Normal


THERE is still disagreement among Motu villagers as to who are the rightful landowner of an area known as DA-5, which covers a substantial part of downtown Port Moresby and Gordon in the National Capital District.
There was disagreement all around on this piece of land when the National Lands Commission sat for the third day at the Port Moresby district court house.
The hearing into the pre-Independence cases of land which the State may not have properly acquired from traditional owners saw more disagreements.
Commissioner Luke Kwago, after presenting a report of four claims lodged earlier for DA-5, was bombarded with a swarm of new claims from the Motu villages of Roku, Tatana and Hanuabada.
There is still confusion as to which land areas make up DA-5.
“There are now eight new claims, in addition to the original four, for the same piece of land (DA-5).
“The claimants apparently were from the same clans and villages,” Mr Kwago said.
“I feel there is a dispute.
“My job is to deliberate on the information you lodge and determine whether the State should pay or not.
“I am not here to decide who the rightful landowners are, that is up to you to sort out amongst yourself,” he told the claimants.
The court had given the claimants up until the second week of March next year, to resolve their differences.
Mr Kwago said if they continued to disagree, he would have to refer the matter to the land court to decide who the real owners are, a “very lengthy process”.