Community advocacy group ACT NOW! is backing the call from the leader of the SABL Commission of Inquiry for the Prime Minister to immediately revoke illegal SABL leases.
The head of the Commission of Inquiry, John Numapo, says it is clear the leases should be revoked because they are illegal. He says there can be no excuse for the government sitting on the Commission recommendations, which were presented to the Prime Minister 6 months ago.
Effrey Dademo, Program Manager for ACT NOW! agrees.
"The Commission of Inquiry conducted a thorough investigation and found the SABL leases were illegal. The Prime Minister has accepted the Commission findings but his government has not acted to revoke the illegal leases as recommended by the Commissioners."
"It is outrageous that the government is ignoring a Commission of Inquiry and is not acting to restore land to the people that it has been stolen from".
“People across the country are infuriated by the lack of government action to revoke the leases.”
The Commission of Inquiry revealed that the SABL lease process had been abused to illegally take land from customary landholders without their consent.
In total over 5 million hectares of land, more than 10% of Papua New Guinea's total land mass is affected by the illegal leases, most of which were for a term of 99-years.