Dear Editor – I refer to Commissioner of Lands (COL) previous statement in the media that his ministry strongly relied on the Certificate of No Appeal issued by the Magistrate Court to facilitate land registration of West Rennell.
The certificate was signed by a junior Magistrate identified as Esther Lelapitu on an unknown date, without a letter head as well in the document.
In the Island Sun last Friday it was revealed that Principal Magistrate Jim Seuika has discovered the errors found within the process to facilitate the certificate for Asia Pacific Investment Development (APID) to continue its land registration with the Ministry of Lands.
Hence, Principal Magistrate has issued a revocation letter for the Certificate of No Appeal to the COL on the grounds that the administrative process to uphold justice was abused, so the certificate is declared null and void.
The principal magistrate also stated that Esther Lelapitu, as the presiding magistrate over the matter, has failed to keep records in the list, thus the process is made behind the normal court practises or behind court doors.
In this case, the acquisition officer Penrose Palmer was lying about his claim that the process was legal, whereas the system in the Magistrate Court was never adhered to, as stated by the Principal Magistrate.
It is sad that these things happen within the government offices and more surprising is the fact that those people involved were not new to their job to be taught on how the administration of land acquisition should be carried out.
These people need investigations, sooner the better or do nothing about it so that such practises will continue to undermine our development aspirations for this nation.
It is obvious that this process was done outside the court door in order to complete the part of the legal process to convince the Commissioner of Lands (COL) to continue with the registration in the Ministry.
We would be more than happy if the COL could say something about the situation arising from this controversial Certificate issued by this junior magistrate.