Plan for new land court

National, Normal

The National, Wednesday October 16th, 2013

 THE Papua New Guinea Magisterial Services plans to rollout a new land court system in the country. 

It will be carried out by the provincial engagement team comprising senior magistrates Jimmy Tapat, Mark Selefkariu, Samuel Lavatul and Betty Jacob. 

Lands Deputy Chief Magistrate Mark Pupaka said the provincial team tours were aimed at soliciting support for re-establishing the provincial dispute settlement committees. 

“We will address the need for provincial administrations to take on the responsibility of land mediators under appropriate terms and conditions,” he said. 

“The main outcome is to forge strong relationships with provincial administrations so that they accept responsibility for land mediators and make permanent commitments.

“Our engagement was necessitated by the existing double barrel approach to resolving disputes over customary land, namely, mediation and adjudication.  

“The engagement of land mediators will be based on the 2009 determination assigning service delivery functions and responsibilities to provincial and local governments’ imperatives. 

“Further consolidation is required to move forward in partnership to manage the customary land disputes. 

“The team will engage in strategic talks with stakeholders and implementing partners within the frameworks of a phased rollout plan to establish the land court system.

“We will talk with pilot provinces and provincial administrations on how best magisterial services can collaborate with them to resuscitate and invigorate the provincial land dispute committees.”

The team recently toured Milne Bay, Morobe and Madang and are preparing for Kokopo and Goroka.