18 September 2011

National Parliament to approve Land and Property Law in October

Source: The Dili Weekly Friday, 16 September 2011 19:24 Written by Ezequiel Freitas - MP Manuel Tilman said the Land and Property Law will be approved in the month of October and will help ease land dispute tensions.

The Land and Property Law that is currently being debated within the National Parliament will according to Member of Parliament Manuel Tilman be approved by October but he warned that if it is not, it will then only be finalized in the New Year.

“Because on 15 October the new budget will come in and everything will grind to a halt,” said MP Tilman last week at the National Parliament in Dili.

The MP added the law has already been passed in its generality and currently is being debated in its detail and the law will not be able to be approved prior to the Civil Code Law being approved.

In the meantime, MP Mario Viegas Carascalao said the Land and Property Law has been with Commission A of the National Parliament since last year but so far it has not yet fully been debated.

“We only had one meeting in Commission A to discuss the Land and Property Law. Not all the members of Commission A were present, only four of us turned up but we decided this law should be made a priority,” said the MP.

He believes Commission A is not competent enough to consider this particular draft law. “If Commission A is not able to consider it we can create an eventual commission and present it to the plenary because our plan is that by the end of October this law must be finalized because people are killing each other over land disputes.”

At the same time MP Estanislao da Silva said the Land and Property Law was already with Commission A and it was not yet known when it will send it to the plenary to be further debated.

“The community is fighting over land and that is why recently the government approved a decree law so that land not under dispute can be registered and with clear ownership. I urge the community to not kill one another over land and to wait until this law is approved so that disputes can be settled.”

ETLJB: The last available version of the draft land law that ETJLB has published is Law for a Special Regime for the Determination of Ownership of Immovable Property Version 3

The public consultation on the draft land law was deficient and non-participatory. See for example: Timor-Leste Draft Flawed, deficient and insufficient public consultations on East Timor's draft land law 

Rede ba Rai Press Release: Only brief thoughts from Baucau on the new Land Law allowed

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