Minister responsible for National Housing Corporation and Urban Development, John Kaupa, said the spotlight is on the illegal acquisition of the blocks of land in the K17 million National Government sanctioned project at portion 528 of the 302 hectors of land at Durand farm, in the Moresby North-East district.
Last Friday, former Moresby North-East MP and owner of the PNG Resources Corporation Ltd, Labi Amaiu, was arrested and faces fraud-related charges, said Kaupa.
Kaupa said the National Government has invested a lot of money in the project but due to the basic trunk services such as water, sewerage and electricity not being available, the project was put on halt.
“We are revitalising the projects again now, and any illegal acquisition of the blocks title will be reverted back to NHC as we have already started clearing the land for housing this month for the project to eventuate,” he said in a statement.
“Now for those who have acquired blocks of land illegally without following due process, the state will retain it.
“I have now instructed my officers in the Department to report any cases of forgery in this Durand Farm project and other illegal sale of NHC properties to law enforcing agencies so we can bring back the NHC to its reputable status.”
The Minister said the 301 titles obtained by a company named PNG Resources Ltd was done fraudulently and he would like the National Fraud Squad to do its own investigation to put the issue to rest.
“This issue is not politically motivated as reported by The National on the 25th of June, 2018.
“NHC is a big department and the Durand farm project has received a lot of criticism since it was not completed. But when I was appointed as the Minister by the O’Neill-Abel government, we have done massive clean- up in the NHC,” Kaupa said.
“Any illegal or fraudulent transaction of business in National Government sanctioned projects will be referred to the National Fraud Squad to do its own investigation.
“We are starting with the PNG Resource Corporation Ltd and more will be unveiled, including the illegal, fraudulent purchase of all NHC properties and houses throughout the country.
“This project is intended to house our people for their benefit. We would not like to see it being dragged on by a few people with vested interest.
“Now the matter is before the courts so I will not make any further comments but it is a warning to anyone who intends to defraud the state and our people that corrupt dealings will not be entertained but rather, proper and legal procedures must be followed to do business in our country.”
(Housing Minister John Kaupa)