29 Sep 2003

Fiji government says its commited to restoring rights of indigenous landowners

4:44 pm on 29 September 2003

The Fiji Information Minister, Simione Kaitani, says the Government is committed to restoring to indigenous landowners what is rightfully theirs.

Mr Kaitani's comments came after Cabinet gave approval for the setting up of an Indigenous Claims Tribunal to investigate and decide how to redress the alienation of land from indigenous owners.

Mr Kaitani says the Government is not deterred by the possibility that the move could result in a huge number of claims for compensation:

"We remain committed and the issue is of course regarding the millions of dollars that it will end up in a big industry ..that is something that is right now part of the unknown but we still need to, of course, face and face very honestly."