Resolve your dispute within 45 days or else it will be resolved for you by the court, is essentially the language in the court order issued on Civil Action No. 18-077 this April, a dispute regarding who rightfully should hold the titles of Ngeribkal clan and therefore over Tiull land within Ngerbeched hamlet of Koror State.

The case was filed by Dirribkal Mary Hiroko Sugiyama, Ngeribkal Bonibacio Eberdong, Dircholsuchel Mary Thing and Kekerei el Techedib Timothy Ngirdimau against Robat Demei and Ngedikes Gibbons over the contested title of Dirribkal and Ngiribkal of the Ngeribkal clan of Ngerbeched.

After presentations from attorneys of both plaintiffs and defendants in this case, the court issued its order “strongly” urging both sides to meet and settle their dispute within 45 days or until May 31st, 2019.  If no settlement is reached by this deadline, the court will proceed with decision and judgment on the issue.

According to one of the attorneys of the parties, both are closely related and on-going funeral customs will be taking up their time but they expect to meet after these customs to discuss this matter.

In early 2018, after land court issued the title of ownership of much of Tuill hamlet of Ngerbeched to Ngeribkal clan, 39 families that have resided in that area since the 50’s were under threat of being evicted from their homes.  Some of them practically lived in this area almost all of their lives and had difficulty with the leaving the only homes they’ve known.

The issue became more complex when it appeared there were two claimants to the position of chief of Ngeribkal clan.  This led to this civil action no. 18-077 to settle the rightful claimants to the head of Ngeribkal clan of Ngerbeched, Koror.

Until this case is settled, most of the current residents of Tuill remain uncertain of their future. (By L.N. Reklai)