Three years ago, the 10 lines elected a committee consisting of a representative of each line. I was elected chairperson of the committee.
The football club’s rushed proposal to erect a building on the netball court using foreign aid money was declined by the majority of landowners. We applied for an injunction to prevent this.
At this point the Muri Aronga Mana joined the proceedings in support of the football club. Only three of the seven Muri Aronga Mana are registered landowners. Yet they claimed to own and administer the land under customary rules as to title land.
The judge declined an injunction, but steered well clear of this central issue of who actually owns the land.
What we finished up with was a case where no decision was made on the central issue, being ownership rights.
To resolve that issue, the landowners must once again incur the cost of legal proceedings to get a declaration that to them is self-evident – they are the landowners because they are registered as such and the Aronga Mana has no say in the matter.
Registration is obtained through succession, which is established by genealogy.
Note: A letter from Mata-Atua McNair with regard to Motu Koromiri will be published later this week.