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Submissions continue over disputed Tavua land

February 3, 2016 5:22 am

Opposition Member of Parliament Viliame Gavoka says goodwill and the livelihood of a growing mataqali need to be considered in a petition contesting the ownership of land next to the Vatukoula Mines.

In a submission to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Justice, Law and Human Rights, Gavoka argued on behalf of the Yavusa Navauvau which claims to be the rightful owner of a parcel of land in Tavua covering more than seventy-five hundred acres.

“Section (28) 2, of the constitution where under section 27, whatever is no longer used by the crown should be returned to the indigenous owners so these are another way of approaching these.”

Committee Chair Ashneel Sudakhar questioned whether it is still feasible for the original owners of the land to be verified given the numerous sales and purchases of various portions of the land in question.

The committee traveled to Tavua this afternoon and will hear submissions tomorrow from two other claimants including the Yavusa Tovatova and Yavusa Yaladro.