In this episode we explore who 'owns' Customary Land... and it isn't as obvious as you may think!
The episode is built around a paper that I co-authored with a former lawyer colleague, Krishn Shah, in which we explored customary land ownership using Fiji as a case study. Using Fiji is helpful, as Native Land Records have been kept since the time of the Deed of Cession to Queen Victoria in 1874. This sets Fiji apart from its Pacific neighbours, as well as many over Indigenous groups. Moreover, since 1940 indigenous 'landowners' in Fiji have had their surplus land managed by the Native Land Trust Board (now the iTaukei Land Trust Board), meaning the customary 'landowners' have benefited from having legal and property specialists representing then in all land dealings.
Paper by Spike Boydell & Krishn Shah
'An inquiry into the nature of land ownership in Fiji'
Paper by Joeli Balendrokadroka
'The Fijian Understanding of the Deed of Cession Treaty 1874'
Music: Battle Drums by Kyle Preston
©️ Spike Boydell 2023
Host: Spike Boydell
Royalty free music used in this episode is from my Artlist.io subscription.
DISCLAIMER: The views, insights and opinions shared on the Customary Land Podcast are those of the Host, any Guests, and others they may cite. They do not constitute legal or financial advice and should not be construed as such by any individual, group or organisation. Before undertaking any dealing or action relating to customary land, individuals, groups or organisations should obtain professional advice from a qualified lawyer, experienced valuer and/or certified accountant with specialist expertise in your particular country. Alternatively, you can contact Customary Land Solutions for advocacy, advisory and capacity building solutions for customary and indigenous landowning groups and trusts on land management, leasehold, valuation and resource compensation issues (E: firstname.lastname@example.org).