[Yap State News Brief] The Council Of Pilung Issues Letter To Chairman Of RED Committee

Resource: Yap State News Brief (April 8, 2013)


The traditional branch of the Yap State Government, the Council of Pilung, sent a communication to Senator Charles S. Chieng, who is the Chairman of The Resources, Education and Development (RED) Committee, last Thursday, April 04, 2013 expressing their regrets that they will not participate in the upcoming public hearing scheduled on Tuesday, April 09, 2013 at the legislature chamber at 10:00AM. The public hearing notice was issued by the RED Committee on April 02, 2013 regarding a miscellaneous communication (8-225) from the Concern Citizens Group on provisions in the ETG lease template agreement between ETG and individual landowner in Yap State.


The letter reads as follows:


“Dear Mr, Chairman:


We want to thank you for inviting the Council of Pilung to the public hearing “regarding provisions in the ETG lease template agreement between ETG and the individual landowner in Yap State”, which is scheduled for April 9 at 10:00 a.m. We, the members of the Council of Pilung, will not be attending the public hearing. We feel that this public hearing is going to be an encroachment into a private dealing between private citizens and a private business, and it will be an overreach in the exercise of a government power.


Ensuring that private citizens fully understand the terms of their leases with any business, particularly a foreign investor, is a valid concern. But running their leases, or the lease template that they are negotiating, thru the political process of a public hearing is not the proper way to address that concern. Instead what the citizens need is access to legal services.


The State contributes to MLSC’s budget annually so that it can provide free legal services to citizens. But if MLSC cannot help citizens negotiate their leases with ETG for whatever reason, the State can consider appropriating funds to hire a lawyer or a law firm (even from outside of Yap if necessary) to assist citizens in their lease negotiations with ETG during a specific period of time, say a year or two. State funds were once given to the Satawal community to hire a lawyer to represent them in a reef damage case. So there is precedent for this.


There may also be other options to better ensure that our citizens have access to legal services in respect of the ETG project. We ask that your Committee focus on the options by which the State can best ensure accessibility for landowners to legal services, rather than directly reviewing private leases through a political lens.


If your Committee is to start reviewing private leases involving ETG, will it stop there? Or will it have to review all other leases between private landowners and other business going forward?  Thank you.



Bruno Tharngan, Chairman

Thomas Falngin, Vice-Chairman

Steven Mar, Member

Francis X. Fithingmow, Member

James Manguon, Member

Justin Yilubwag, Member

James Limar, Member

James A. Yatman, Member

Louis LukanGaw, Mamber

Cyril Yinnifel, Member”



A signed copy of the letter may be found here: http://yapstategov.org/downloads/COP-04-04-13.pdf


Resource: Yap State News Brief (April 8, 2013)


One thought on “[Yap State News Brief] The Council Of Pilung Issues Letter To Chairman Of RED Committee

  1. the most unbelievable thing is that even when literally half the world signed a petition that listed why ETG businesses should not be allowed on yap, they still are carrying on. i wonder if the governor is acting blindly or is he being blindly acted??

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