More time in Committee stage on Strata titles bill: Wale

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BY GEORGINA KEKEA

Honiara is developing very fast.

MEMBER of Parliament for Auki/Langalanga has called for more time to be allocated in the Committee stage for parliament to look into the Strata Titles Bill 2017.

Speaking last week in parliament, Matthew Wale says till now, they are still to grasp the Strata Titles Bill.

Wale says this bill is so technical that even those who will bear primary responsibility in this have expressed a lack of technical knowledge in it.

“And so I asked the Honorable Prime Minister to allocate more days than usual for the committee stage. Maybe all of next week. So that we can do justice to the parliamentary mandate for supervision, oversight and scrutiny of legislation.”

Wale says he is not sure whether this Bill had received any detailed review in caucus and/or in cabinet as he was absent during the inquiry of the Bill.

He said the bill went through the inquiry stage very quickly and so there is a risk because the bill has too many clauses and schedules but more so because it is technical and complex.

The MP for Auki Langalanga said this bill will not receive the proper due parliamentary scrutiny that the constitution expects of the MPs.

Strata Title is a form of land tenure that allows units in a building to be individually owned, while the “parent” land title is owned by all unit owners in common.

The concept originated in New South Wales, Australia in the 1960’s and has since spread around the world to places like Canada, New Zealand, Singapore, Dubai, Fiji and Vanuatu.

Strata Title from the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Survey is seen as an answer to the scarcity of land around Honiara and the high cost of rentals, as it would encourage more vertical development of land for medium and high-rise apartments.

It would also enable the development of more affordable units, in a city where land has become too expensive for average citizens.

The Strata Titles Bill 2017 is still in the Committee stage, currently.

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