16th December 12:15 AM
Rabuka says he does not know whether iTaukei land will still be safe under the Land Bank Act
By Vijay Narayan and Timoci Qaranivalu
Wednesday 10/10/2018
SODELPA leader Sitiveni Rabuka

SODELPA leader, Sitiveni Rabuka says he does not know whether iTaukei land will still be safe under the Land Bank Act if a different government comes into power.

This was after a concerned citizen had questioned Rabuka whether the iTaukei land is safe in the hands of the current government during a talanoa session at the Veikaveti informal settlement in Nabua.

Rabuka says that SODELPA had earlier said that iTaukei land would only be safe in their own hands.

He also said that previously, some officials from the Native Land Trust Board now know as iTaukei Land Trust Board, were appointed from the Great Council of Chiefs where they get directions from the GCC before making decisions in the NLTB.

Rabuka also says that it will be easy to bring back the Great Council of Chiefs once he is in power as there is only a regulation that caused its discontinuation.

According to the Land Use Act, 60% of the members of a landowning unit have to agree to deposit their iTaukei land under the Land Bank system.

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama had earlier said that the government will consider the views of majority of the members in a landowning unit if they want their land to be deposited and leased.

The Act states that its objective is to utilise designated iTaukei land in a manner that is in the best interest of the iTaukei landowners.

The government has said that the Land Use Unit is facilitating the efficient leasing of land which is idle and unutilised under terms and conditions that are attractive to the landowner and tenant.

The lease rental is based on market rates and landowners receive the full amount as there is no administration cost involved.

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