Council advised that land-adjudication exercise will begin in mid-May, bringing an end to communal ownership

The Barbuda Council has been put on notice that the Gaston Browne
Administration intends to proceed with its land-adjudication process
beginning in May.

A letter to Council Chairman Devon Warner – dated April 15 and signed by
Solicitor-General Martin Camacho – notes that the Government is going ahead
with its plan to make lands on the sister-island freehold, replacing the
traditional leasehold or communal system that has existed for generations.
In the correspondence, captioned “Adjudication of Lands in Barbuda,”

Camacho notifies the Council that the Administration is seeking to ensure that
there is one common system for the registration of title to, and interests in, all
lands in the twin-island state. 

Therefore, the Government intends to make all lands in Barbuda registered

This move is in keeping with the Registered Land (Amendment) Act, 2023,
which brought Barbuda under the Act, making it necessary to implement the
land-adjudication process, Camacho writes. 

The solicitor-general notes that this process will bring Barbuda in line with
what obtains in Antigua.

Reportedly, the entire 62 square-mile island has been declared an
adjudication area by Attorney-General Steadroy “Cutie ” Benjamin, based on
the Land Adjudication (Declaration of Area) No. 7 Order, 2023, No 43 of 2023.
The Council was reminded that this statutory instrument appeared in the
Official Gazette on Wednesday, October 4, 2023.

According to Camacho, this land-adjudication exercise will be led by Sir Clare
Roberts K.C., who has officially been appointed the adjudication officer. High
Court Registrar Cecile Hill is the project manager.

There are expected to be other appointments shortly, including of a
demarcation officer and the survey and recording officers.
The land-adjudication process is expected to commence on or about May 15,
Camacho advises.

Therefore, the solicitor-general says that Barbudans who are claiming land
ownership, or an interest in land, should cooperate with those involved in the
exercise so that the adjudication process can be completed successfully.
Prime Minister Gaston Browne, Attorney-General Benjamin, Sir Clare, and
Project Manager Hill have all been copied on the letter to the Barbuda Council.