Save A Village in Yap
It has come to the attention of the people of Maap that a land lease agreement has been signed between YAP ETG PARADISE ISLANDS INTERNATIONAL INVESTMENT GROUP INC. and BERNARD YORUW, BRUNO THARNGAN, AND ALPHONSO GANANG. The lease includes the lands of “Tilnguy” and “Arbiy” in the village of Wacholab which comprises of 32,553 square meters.
The people of Yap lodge this formal opposition letter to the leaders of Yap State for the following reasons.
1. On the grounds of being an unconscionable contract: The land lease agreement provides US$200,000 for a 99 year lease. As the square meter of the land is 32,553, the actual breakdown of payment of use for the land is as follows:
c. US$.006/square meter a month
The agreed amount of payment for this land lease is both an insult and a joke for the signing parties. Furthermore, if allowed to stand this will have long lasting repercussions for future land lease deals on the island of Yap. The agreement of such allows for precedent to be set for unrealistic land lease deals for land owners interested in leasing in the future.
2. On the grounds that the community was not consulted or made aware: Although the concerned land belongs to the owners, the lease of such will have massive effects for others in the village of Wacholab and neighboring villages in Maap. Long term plans and realistic development goals should be discussed and agreed by all concerned and affected residents of Maap before a large sweeping multi-generational lease like this is signed. We ask that the State consider the community as a whole and the affects that this will have on all before allowing such a lease to be permitted.
3. On the grounds that one of the signers of the lease was coerced and cajoled: Upon conclusion of the signing of the lease agreement, one party to the agreement has confided in relatives and neighbors that the use of traditional rights and age forced his hand to signature. This signing party has no interest of signing a lease agreement that unilaterally forfeits his rights to his and his families land for nearly 4 generations. Consideration should be given by the leaders of this great State in the irresponsible and abusive use of traditional power and right to take advantage of others to their detriment.
4. On the grounds that the leased land have residents with notarized lien’s and easements: There are currently 3 families that will be evicted from the land without proper compensation or assistance from the lessor. In addition, these families were not consulted or made aware of the repercussions to themselves of the actions of the land owners.
We, the undersigned people of Yap Island respectfully request the State Government to try and void the lease agreement and to have the Foreign Investment Board seriously examine ETG’s foreign investment permit and decide whether ETG has violated any condition of its permit.