Vete eyes constitutional case over urban land

23 Oct 2012

Vanuatu Daily Post

Indigenous land rights advocate group, Vete are intending to take their customary land claim to another level with plans to launch a constitutional review case over the urban land of Port Vila.

Supporters of Vete demand declaration of Port Vila urban area before 2012 General Election

The customary land association has also resorted to posting notes all over town demanding that a declaration be made over the custom ownership of the Port Vila urban land before the 2012 Election.

Latest actions by the Vete Association give a clear indication to all authorities concerned that the fight for custom ownership of the town area is yet nowhere near over.

Vete was prompted to rekindle their claim even after its leader, former MP David Abel’s candidature for this year’s General Election was quashed by the Electoral Office over an issue relating to land in Port Vila.

“The argument by Caretaker Prime Minister about the money owed to him over the customary ownership of the Lakatoro Land was accepted but what about our long standing claim over Port Vila urban land,” said a concern Vete Leader, David Abel.

Daily Post understands the intended constitutional case planned by Vete is to challenge the legality of the declaration of Port Vila urban land by the first Minister of Lands in 1982.

The Vete Leader believes they have documented prove of a 1920 and 1930 court judgment that was ignored when declaration was made in 1982.