Land lease payment now based on clan hierarchy

January 7, 2024 7:44 am

The Coalition government has solidified its stance on land lease distribution, opting for an equal sharing policy.

This has been highlighted by the Minister of iTaukei Affairs, Ifereimi Vasu during his reflection on his inaugural year in office.

Vasu states that the previous government’s strategy of uniformly distributing land leases among landowners had led to turmoil among clan leaders.

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Addressing this issue, the government has now sanctioned a revised approach where a clan leader is designated to receive the majority of land lease returns with the remaining distribution equitably divided among clan members.

“The equal lease distribution, cabinet endorsed the reinstatement of the old lease distribution as follows; Turaga nai taukei three percent, turaga na yavusa five percent, Turaga na Mataqali seven percent, the remainder to be equally distributed amongst the Mataqali members.”

Vasu anticipates that this redistribution will enhance collaboration between landowners and their communities, facilitating the efficient execution of their responsibilities.

Village Headman of Lutu Wainibuka in Naitasiri, Joji Rinakama expressed satisfaction with the decision made to revert to a more traditional distribution model.

“The government giving land leases based on Fijian Clan hierarchy is seen as a positive step. In our i-Taukei community, we’re used to having leaders in our villages. Before making decisions about any changes or problems, we always talk to these leaders. So, it makes sense that these Clan leaders get the most from the land leases. After them, the rest of us in the clan get our share based on our positions in the clan.”

This policy shift is designed to mitigate chaos and promote cooperation in fulfilling communal responsibilities.

Village leaders have welcomed this initiative, emphasizing the role of clan leadership in ensuring fair and effective land distribution.