THE government has revoked all Special Agriculture Business Leases (SABLs) and has called for the surrender of the licenses.
“I am pleased to announce that the government has revoked and called for the surrender of all SABL titles,” Lands Minister Benny Allen announced in a ministerial statement on Friday.
“[We have] set in place a process to convert all these titles and present them to customary landowners under the revised Incorporated land groups system and the new voluntary customary land registration system.
“This is a most positive, productive and pro-active approach to people and government partnership in development,” he said.
Mr Allen said a National Executive Council decision decided that 25 SABLs be revoked outright and no more leases issued.
He said the SABLs must be surrendered to the State in favour of land titles to be issued to customary landowners.
Leases can then be drawn from these land titles and issued to the same or related tenants but with new conditions negotiated by and for the benefit of the title holders and the state.
“The state should review the SABL Commission of Enquiry’s recommendations to revoke all existing SABLs, thus deal with them case by case through mediation and alternative dispute resolution with the leadership of the national court and the judges, or mediators appointed by the courts.
“This is because the indefeasibility of land titles must be respected at all times otherwise chaos will reign over land throughout the country,” Mr Allen said.