Vanuatu daily news digest | 12 January 2015

Not a lot today, but it’s all of importance, starting with the ground-breaking for a new Chinese Embassy building at Nambatri, near the Mok area and table tennis HQ, the spot also known as Alamajo. A major building project will follow we were told by Radio Vanuatu News this morning.

The Morobe land (near and around the airport) case has not gone away, Daily Post informs. Alick Kalmelu the former coordinator of the Customary Land Tribunal office says this rural (note, not municipal) land was not subject to the 1992 urban land compensation. Kalmelu is seeking a re-hearing. He also points out perpetual ownership being inconsistent with the Efate kastom land laws. There’s a real need for this to be decided soon in view of the intention to re-draw municipal boundaries.

The Mele village paramount chieftaincy issue will re-emerge on 16 March. Following an appeal heard mid-December the case is returned to the Magistrates Court. The 13 small chiefs are urged to take control of the affairs of the village. The issue seems to mainly revolve around the concept of whether Simeon Poilapa should inherit the chiefly title of Peter Poilapa II. The main contender for the paramount title, Chief Namata, suggests Simeon Poilapa is a lesser chief of his family.