BY SAMIE WAIKORI
PEOPLE with outstanding claims and issues from the ethnic tension period may soon find the answers they seek.
Director of Peace and Reconciliation under MNURP, Mr Reuben Lilo, said they are now in the scoping process of the “Reparation Bill”, which looks at bearing the old issues and bring complete healing for the people.
He said the bill is based on the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) report.
Lilo said after TRC completed work from 2009-2012, there was a part of the recommendation to establish a reparation commission.
“However, in pursuance of that the MNURP established a reparation commission and formulated a legal instrument to work on the bill.”
Lilo said this is where the work on the bill has started and is now in the scoping process.
He announced that the reparation bill is purposely to fulfil the TRC report as recommended to address the people’s outstanding issues of the ethnic crisis.
“There are issues undone and unfinished and government is committed as its priority to settle the issue once and for all.
“It may take us quite a while to settle all these issues, but government has to start somewhere.
“So the bill look at addressing old unresolved issues on loss of properties, loss of lives, loss of business, loss of education, health, land issues and all complicated cross cutting issues being captured in the bill.
“The idea is we want to do a proper framework means a law has to establish to guide us through the establishment and addressing the outstanding issues in a more systematic way,” Lilo said.
He said this is the first time since the crisis that a ruling government is organising a policy to deal with old issues of the ethnic tension.
Lilo said there is no existing law to deal with the issue.
He said the government has properly organised a framework to follow so that “we don’t do things in a piecemeal”.
“So we have to put all these mishaps into a proper policy framework so that when it becomes a law, it guides us in addressing the issues,” he said.
He said the work is coordinated by the Prime Minister’s Office and MNURP with support from other line ministries and organisations.