A WEST Rennell landowner has blamed the Ministry of Forest & Research for confusion on logging cases in the island, claiming three concessions overlapped on the same area were approved by the ministry, which saw the conduct of Timber Right hearings.
Pautangata Hakatingisa’a said the Naone trail and the coastline were demarcated in three to four different logging applications, causing confusion that the court found it complicated and difficult to easily deal with.
Mr Hakatingisa’a said there are four timber rights hearing held over the same land by the Customary Land Appeal Court (CLAC) and some of the parties involved lost their cases in the CLAC.
One of them is the Mungihenua Investment Company (MIC), which lost both in CLAC and High Court.
“I am surprised why these losing parties in court continue to pursue disputes and operation over concession areas they have lost in court,” he exclaimed.
He said private lawyers who are now contracted by these people should play the advisory role to their clients by persuading them to withdraw the cases over those land, seeing that ownership of land is yet to be determined by the Renbell local court and the council of chiefs, which were pending since the 1980s.
He added history and backgrounds of court cases over North West Rennell land are well protected in his possession, so it would be wiser for lawyers representing litigants in court over Naone land to have thorough discussion with him.
By AATAI JOHN