Beware sale of clan land


Source: PNG Loop

Expert Former Chief Land Title Commissioner Josepha Kiris has issued a stern warning to people selling  customary land in NCD to restrain or face the full brunt of the law.

Kiris, who is also a professional lawyer, told PNG Loop that customary land was not supposed to be sold as there was no law guaranteeing the buyer to own the land. 

She said customary land is owned by the clan and not by a single person who tends to make a decision on his own.

“Land is owned by clans and individuals have rights to use it depending on their position within the clan. Their position is determined by customary land law.

“So they might have a primary right or a secondary right. Nevertheless it is a right or interest in the land which cannot be terminated by any law as it is protected by Section 53(5)(a), (c) and (d) of the Constitution,”Kiris said.

She said land law is fundamental to the lives of all Papua New Guineans because they have rights of inheritance based on the customary law that applies to their respective clans.

Kiris is calling on the Government to also look into this matter seriously and deal with it as lives have already been lost when proper arrangements were not made.

“All Papua New Guineans (including the Prime Minister, his ministers and members of parliament) have some form of customary rights to land and they must start doing something  before it is too late,” she said.

She urged the Government to deal with individuals who sell their clan’s land and make laws to restrict them from selling the land so their children in the future will benefit from it.