GCC meeting: Old lease distribution policy

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Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka, Minister for i-Taukei Affairs, Culture, Heritage and Arts, Ifereimi Vasu and Assistant Minister for i-Taukei Affairs, Isikeli Tuiwailevu arrive for the official opening of the Great Council of Chiefs meeting on Bau Island on Wednesday, May 24, 2023. Picture: SOPHIE RALULU

The Great Council of Chiefs has endorsed the reinstatement of the old lease distribution policy — but with recipients receiving a reduced per cent — and the setting up of a special fund for the future of iTaukei development. iTaukei Affairs Minister Iferemi Vasu said this plan would benefit iTaukei people.

He pointed out the previous distribution system did not tramslate into developments in landowner communities.

“The reduced percentage will be for the liuliu ni (head of) iTaukei, liuliu ni (head of) yavusa and liuliu ni (head of) mataqali,” he said.

“The remaining percentage will be distributed equally amongst mataqali members.”

Part of the funding for the special fund will come from a percentage of rhe lease money.

Mr Vasu said representatives of the GCC were briefed on Tuesday regarding the equal distribution of lease and recommendations.

“There are few issues that needed to be addressed and we have had discussions with them. What will do is to have more consultations with the chiefs.

“We have to inform them of the benefits because some of them don’t really know.

“We have advised them on what was being done to Fijian Holdings and to the iTaukei Trust Fund.

“We want to help the landowners and the iTaukei.”

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