MP is originally from Namosi village: FICAC witness

May 18, 2022 4:42 pm

The second witness in the case against Opposition MP Ratu Suliano Matanitobua has informed the court that the MP is originally from Namosi village.

Kusitino Lebaivalu, a former village headman for Namosi village, says in the traditional context, Ratu Suliano owns Namosi province, but he does not own all the land in the province.

Lebaivalu adds there are specific pieces of land in the province which are owned by other people from Namosi and the issue of land ownership can only be confirmed by the iTaukei Affairs and the Vola ni Kawa Bula (iTaukei records with Native Lands Commission).

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He however, says Ratu Suliano is the main chief and leader of Namosi and holds authority over the province.

The 61-year-old says the paramount chief’s home is situated in Veivatuloa village, and he can view Ratu Suliano’s home from Namosi village.

Lebaivalu told the court that Ratu Suliano resides at Veivatuloa village in Namosi, and he travels to and from his home on a daily basis.

The former village headman also testified that Ratu Suliano visits Namosi village randomly and decides which home will host him during his stay, and that he doesn’t seek permission from anyone in the village if he wants to visit.

Lebaivalu could not recall the number of times the MP visited Namosi village because he did not keep a record when he was the village headman from 2017 to 2021.

The trial continues at the Anti-Corruption Court in Suva.