Lands Department

Morobe building board ‘was wrong’

Member for Lae and Lands Minister, John Rosso, said the issue surrounding portion 20, section 67 at Markham Road was brought to his attention when he got elected and became the Lands Minister.

“I refused to sign the title at the time because – Lae is my home – I knew that it’s the middle of the road. How did it come to that stage?” Rosso said, referring to the access road connecting Lae League to the main road. 

Lae residents question land acquisition

Kevin Chan of Y&C Enterprise Ltd was caught off guard yesterday when Lae residents; Tracy Terence, Bak Robert and Lemek Luke, confronted him and questioned him on how he had acquired a portion of land at the Lae Rugby League grounds along Markham Road.

Automated System To Improve Efficiency

When presenting to Parliament the Ministerial statement, Minister Rosso stated that with this in mind for the past two years, he has directed the Lands Secretary to review some of the ways it did business.

He said the department has gone into a transformation and is changing its structure and business processes for land dealings to achieve these outcomes.

Lands Dept under audit

Lands Minister Justin Tkatchenko recently revealed that a consultant has been assisting the department in its reform.

Samuel Zeller is with the Lands Department courtesy of the Australian High Commission.

From the Economic Governance and Inclusive Growth Partnership, Zeller, who started with the Department in October 2018, is conducting a full audit of every single division.

“To ensure we are completely modernised and completely audited so we can take our department to the next level,” stated Tkatchenko.

K6bn in land claims: Lands Minister

However, Minister for Lands & Physical Planning, Justin Tkatchenko, believes 80 percent of them are fake.

He revealed this in parliament on September 6th when asked by Komo-Margarima MP, Manasseh Makiba.

Makiba said he is facing difficulty in expanding programs in his district due to issues regarding land acquisition and compensation.

He said landowners were claiming exorbitant compensation amounts.

A result of these claims has resulted in the shutting down of the Komo International Airport.

Tkatchenko slams acting Secretary’s comments

The acting official secretary has reportedly said the Head of State is not bound to accept and comply with recommendations from the Lands Minister.

However, during a press briefing today, Lands Minister Justin Tkatchenko refuted the statement, saying the Lands Minister gives the final advice or approval, while the Governor General is then given an advice for him to ‘only’ endorse.

This falls under Section 62 of the Land Act 1996.

Case struck out, pastor to continue work

Pastor Jack was arrested and charged on April 8th 2018 over allegations of fraud and uttering, which was also publicised following a media conference by Lands Minister Justin Tkatchenko.

The Pastor said the decision by the Committal Court to strike out his case should put to rest any allegations and rumours that have tarnished his name.

Pastor Jack was alleged to have fraudulently acquired a portion of land titled 3683 Granville (Gerehu) designated under an Urban Development Lease (UDL).

Pastor arrested for fraud

Pastor Michael Jack, aged 43 of Koma village in the Mt Hagen Central District, Western Highlands Province, was charged with one count of forgery and one count of uttering.

Pastor Michael Jack also used other names such as: Paulus Kei, John Jason Paraka and Jack Ruimb when dealing with different people. One of his identification documents shows he was of Afghanistan & PNG nationality. 

Lands staff receive NID cards

Minister for National Planning and Monitoring, Richard Maru, today presented to his counterpart and Minister for Lands, Justin Tkatchenko, certificates and NID cards for his staff.

Maru said Tkatchenko was the first Minister on record to have all staff issued NID cards.

In a media conference today, Minister Maru commended Tkatchenko for taking the lead in ensuring the Lands Department staff all had NID cards.

He also called on other ministers and departments to follow this example.

Public servants still locked out

Health Department workers were still locked outside their Waigani office this morning when this newsroom visited them.

Despite the dull day, Health Department staff still went to work but only to find out again that their offices were still locked.

They arrived at work at 8am and sat outside the entrance of the Department office, with hopes that a senior officer will inform them whether the office was going to be reopened or not.

Some had personal items still in the office and were concerned.