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Owners want land returned

Felix Chaudhary
Friday, June 13, 2014

TRADITIONAL owners of leased cane land in Nawaicoba near Nadi have asked the iTaukei Land Trust Board for some expired leases to be returned to them.

TLTB CEO Alipate Qetaki said consultations on the issue had been held between the yavusa Leweivunaniu of Yako, 72 farmers from Nawaicoba and sugar industry stakeholders in April and again last week.

Another meeting has been scheduled between the parties for next week.

"In the meetings, the farmers are fully consulted and informed of the requirements for the renewal of leases," Mr Qetaki said.

"For most of the farms, there are no foreseeable impediments to the renewal of their leases subject to them meeting the renewal requirements and field or site inspections.

"However, the traditional landowners, the yavusa Leweivunaniu of Yako, have expressed their desire that some expired leases are to be returned to them for their own use, maintenance and support.

"They have engaged a solicitor to assist them in negotiating and discussing their land needs with the stakeholders."

Mr Qetaki said affected farmers had been informed of the process and it would take up to one month for discussions to be completed.

"Consultations amongst stakeholders have been carried out in a cordial, transparent and friendly atmosphere and in the spirit of co-operation."

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