The Public Curator, Jacob Popuna, says his office is working to help families’ repossess their homes lost through fraudulent deals.
The Public curators Office has given two properties in Lae back to families who lost the title after the titleholder pasted away. The houses belong to the National Housing Corporation.
Many of the cases being handled by the Public curator is current in court.
There are 30 cases in Lae alone; 50 in Port Moresby, and it’s a growing concern around the country.
The problem has stemmed because people who own properties don’t write wills before they die.
The Public Curator, Jacob Popuna says fraudsters take advantage.
“The title was transferred to a company for K45,000 only, so the title has been transferred, but we fought it on behalf of the beneficiaries, the widow, we won in court, we cancelled the title, we revalued the property and now we are selling it for 1,050,000,” says Popuna.
The public curator says the land and houses always in question, when someone dies, has been those owned by the National Housing Corporation.
It is no surprise, Popuna says, that the NHC has been plagued with allegations of corruption and mismanagement.
“Some former staff have been collaborating with the people who wanted to purchase,” says Popuna.
The Public Curators Office in Lae showed EMTV News two properties, where the ownership is being battled out in court.
Two different streets in Eriku, one at Casuarina Avenue claimed by a company, and one at Hibiscus Avenue claimed by a third party.
“We used to live here, until our father died and my brother,” says Miti Tali.
Miti Tali and her family lived at Casuarina Avenue, until her father passed away. The property was to be passed on to her brother, but he too passed away.
The Public Curators Office in Lae has repossessed the property and is assisting Miti who has become the beneficiary.