The National - Monday, February 21, 2011
Seventeen families occupying government houses at the Walium district, Madang, have been given untill the end of this month to move out or face eviction.
This was the message last week from the current Bundi district administrator John Kari, who had the unpleasant task of relaying this message to the families who had claimed to live more than 20 years in those houses.
Kari said that of the 33 houses at the station, 22 were run down, needing major renovation work with families living in them and of that, 17 were occupied by locals themselves who claimed to have some stake to
the houses they occuppied.
Kari said: “These locals have been there for so long. They initially said that due to no government services being provided and no government staff occupying the houses they moved in. I have now asked them to vacate those houses and they have agreed to.”
He said that past administrators had failed to inform the provincial administration of the situation.
Kari said that from his meeting sometime last week, the people said they felt “sorry” for the houses because no one had occupied them and were merely looking after the houses.
He also said that they were putting claims for some form of compensation for “looking after” the houses all these years.
“I asked them who gave them the authorities to move in and do renovation work but they are adamant that they did receive some form of authority from previous LLG managers. Only two or three got written approvals.
“February 28 has been set as the deadline for moving.
“Because there is no police presence with a big number of people moving the people has agreed unanimously to move. Also the 22 houses will be put up for auction once they are renovated,” he added.