ONE of the legal means whereby the Law is applied by the High Court to remove illegal occupants on land is the issuance of Eviction Orders
When such an Order is issued it is expected that the same is fully executed by the Police upon directives by the Sheriff of the High Court.
But experience to date is that more often when beneficiaries of such orders endeavor to implement these orders via the office of the Sheriff and that of the Commissioner of Police, they are simply ignored and shelved away to gather dust or be gnawed by rodents and other munchers.
There is also a flip side to this very sad state of affair.
Now and again when the bearers fail to obtain logistical support from the Sheriff or the Commissioner of Police, they resort to human instinct – take the law in their own hands (law having empowered them so) and demolish houses and destroy properties.
As soon as such incidents occur and are reported to the Police, they are immediately dispatched in droves to make arrests of the land title holders and validated Eviction order beneficiaries.
They are marched with haste to the office of the Director of Public Prosecution are charged, usually, with felonious crimes such as Arson or Malicious Damage.
Whether or not the Victim of Police atrocity had a valid Eviction order from the High Court was immaterial.
The miserable “accused” is convicted mercilessly by the same Court that had issued him an Eviction Order, and thrown him in jail.
In the meantime, the illegal occupants on his land continue to wine and dine, rightly hailing the conviction as punishment deserved, in their favour.
In this legal equation, the just are held accountable and are punished unlawfully while the wrong doers are set free.
It happened to me.
It happened to my employees.
It happened to my Company.
Hatanga has been the victim of these deplorable and unlawful acts for over a decade.
The Company land at Tasahe, known as Parcel 191-007-506 (Remainder) has been a focus of numerous High Court Rulings and Eviction Orders.
During all those years neither the Sheriff nor the Police or the Director of Public Prosecution had ever made any attempts to forcefully remove illegal occupants from our land in spite of our repeated calls and personal approaches to their high profile offices and personnel.
The current count of squatters would stand at more than a thousand souls and the number is ever increasing by the day, literally.
The failure of the Sheriff and the Police to address this escalating illegal phenomenon is sheer absurdity.
Are the Laws of our Country supreme?
Are they intended for a mere elite few?
Are the guardians of the legal and judicial system prudent in their cause of duty?
There are serious questions that must be asked about these legal fraternities as to how they carry out their tasks.
Early this year, the Hon. Attorney General, James Apani’ai, alluded to that very same anomaly, stating that the judiciary and the police had compromised the effective execution of court orders.
Somehow, somewhere, someone needs to be alerted to these depraved causes and remedy them with true justice and indeed righteous acts.
In any country, of this our world, when law, the judiciary and the police fail, anarchy prevails.
Are we headed in that inevitable direction? I do hope against all odds this will not be the case in our beloved country.
Land Encroachment and Trespass was the root cause of the Ethnic Tension.
This generation must, with due diligence, ensure that history does not repeat itself.
Illegally occupying another’s land whether registered or customary, is a serious crime and must not be tolerated, and the powers that be, should not consider it light heartedly.
I call on the judiciary, the police and the office of the Director of Public Prosecution to ensure justice prevails.
Indeed, I had written on this matter previously, but it did seemingly fall on very deaf ears.
By ALEX BARTLETT