Woman heads land board

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A WOMAN has been appointed on Monday to lead the Land Board in the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Survey.

Samantha Tuti was a voting member before her appointment as chairlady.

She replaced outgoing chairman Alfred Soaki, whose two-year term ended on Monday.

Former Guadalcanal Premier, Stephen Panga was also elected to the post of Vice Chairman, replacing former Commissioner of Land, Silva Dunge.

Dr Divinal Ogaoga was also appointed as a new voting member.

Tuti said she looks forward to the challenge and is thankful for the confidence that her colleagues have in her to lead the Board.

She said it is a new experience for her but her experience in other boards previously and currently would help her in her new role.

The other voting members are:

  1. Minister’s appointment nominated by Cabinet – Waeta Ben Tabusasi
  2. Minister’s appointment nominated by SICCI – Natalina Hong
  3. Minister’s appointment nominated by Ministry of Women – Samantha Tuti
  4. PS Lands – Stanley Waleanisia
  5. PS MID – Stephen Maesiola
  6. PS Environment – Dr. Melchior Mataki
  7. PS Provincial Government – Stanley Pirione
  8. PS Commerce – Riley Mesepitu
  9. Former Honiara City Clerk – Rence Sore
  10. Nomination by Chairman, Honiara Planning & Development Board – Ray Andresen
  11. Chairman, Guadalcanal Planning & Development Board – Timothy Ngele

Non-voting Members:

  1. Commissioner of Lands (Acting) (Secretary) – Alan McNeil
  2. Valuer General – Joyce Galo
  3. Surveyor General – Jimmy Ikina
  4. Director of Physical Planning – Rowley Wanega
  5. Registrar General – Joseph Aleve Malanga

According to MLHS website, the Land Board makes all decisions relating to allocation of interest in registered land in Solomon Islands.

This includes the power to grant and transfer Fixed Term Estates, the power to set land premiums and rentals, the power to decide whether to allocate interest in land by direct allocation or by ballot or auction, and the power to grant temporary occupation licenses.

The Land Board was formed after the National Parliament passed the Land and Titles (Amendment) Act 2014, which came into effect on 1 December 2014.

Prior to this, all decisions on allocation of interest in land was done by the Commissioner.

In some cases, the Land Board has delegated certain types of decision-making back to the Commissioner of Lands, including transfer of Fixed Term Estates between non-government parties.