GG’s office jeopardized by single individual: Minister

The Office of the Governor General has been jeopardized by the actions of a single individual.

This was the comment made by Lands Minister Justin Tkatchenko following the publishing of the ‘Land Board Appeal Decisions’ on page 49 of the Post-Courier on Thursday.

Minister Tkatchenko labeled the published document, which was endorsed by the acting official secretary to the Governor General, Bill Toraso, as illegal and misleading.

“These land appeals are still in question and they are still not rectified yet,” he said.

“And for the official acting secretary of the Governor General to publish these land appeals is totally illegal.

“To all those who think they have got their land approved, please understand the situation that this document is false, it’s misleading and it’s illegal.

“We at the Lands Department, with the attorney general, the state solicitor and the chief secretary, are rectifying this illegal situation.”

Minister Tkatchenko said once again, the office of the Governor General has been brought into disrepute.

He was referring to an incident last week where misleading statements were made in relation to the lands appeal process, which falls under Section 62 of the Land Act 1996.

The Minister further questioned the motive behind these acts, especially when it comes to the lands appeals.

“For me as Minister, it is a very frustrating situation where we are trying to clean up and fix the processes that have not been going forward in the past.”

According to the Minister, the process is as follows:

  • The Governor General, by advice from the Government of the day, endorses the decision of the Government of the day;
  • From there it goes to the government printers to be gazetted;
  • The Lands Department implements that gazettal from the decisions that have been made through the proper process.

Meantime, the Office of the Governor General is yet to respond to the issue.

Carmella Gware