The National, Monday July 8th, 2013
THE Department of Lands and Physical Planning requires K50 million annually for land access under its land reform programme under the National Government’s Vision 2050, Minister Benny Allan says.
Allan highlighted this last Friday at the opening of the New Guinea Islands’ regional lands and physical planning office in Kokopo, East New Britain.
He appealed to Deputy Prime Minister and East New Britain regional member Leo Dion to take note of the problem faced by his department and if there was a possibility for the Government to make funding available.
“In Vision 2050, the department is required to increase the state holding land to 20%,” Allan said.
“This aspect of land falls under two categories; land occupied by state that has not been formally acquired and new land required by state to expand service delivery and public infrastructure.
“This will require at least K50 million a year to fully meet this aspiration,” Allan said.
Outlining examples, he said in East New Britain there were some government institutions like schools, health centres or other departments occupying customary land.
“To do that we need at least about K50 million every year to be able to buy off all those land that were still regarded as customary land but comprised government institutions,” Allan said.