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Fiji Academic says NLTB exploits tenants

Fiji Academic says NLTB exploits tenants

Date sent: Fri, 2 Feb 2001 14:20:36 +1200


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Academic says NLTB exploits tenants

A University of the South Pacific academic Dr. Mahendra Reddy claims that the NLTB systematically exploits tenant farmers.

In an article published in today's Daily Post, Dr. Reddy stated that the NLTB had devised numerous mechanisms to extract money from tenant farmers.

These included asking for premiums for leases which range between $5,000-$8000 for residential leases and between $6,000 to $15,000 for agricultural leases; demanding that tenants get consent from landowners who again demand goodwill money and premium directly; demanding that tenants pay $1,000/acre for compensation for deterioration of soil quality; any by dividing rural leases into residential and agricultural leases thereby getting two sets of premiums, goodwill money, and rent from the same family.

Dr. Reddy also recommended that the solution to the land problem in Fiji is for ethnic Indians to move out of agriculture gradually. "It is in the national interest that Indo-Fijian farmers leave agricultural land and this just can not happen overnight. Rather, it is a gradual process an dit requires a transition period", he wrote.

Earlier the NFP and the Fiji cane growers association, which was formed by the NFP, endorsed the NLTB's actions and plans.


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