Friday, April 16

SUHAKAM blames Land and Survey Department for land disputes

This story was published in Free Malaysia Today and is reproduced for the readers of The Broken Shield.

BAU: The Human Rights Commission (SUHAKAM) has put the blame on the Land and Survey Department for the constant occurrences of land disputes between the natives and the government in Sarawak.

Siva Subramaniam, head of SUHAKAM complaints working group said that the department simply issued land leases or titles to companies without conducting ground survey.

“Instead, the department gives approvals by merely sitting in the office,” he said at a dialogue with Kampung Stenggang.

He suggested that the staff of the department should conduct ground survey first before issuing land leases or titles to companies.

“It is improper and impractical for the department to approve land applications without checking. It is unbelievable, but unfortunately the present normal practice of the department is that it will give approvals based on the aerial photographs of the land acquired, and most of the time the information would be different from the actual land status,” he pointed out.

Of course the staff could not be wholly blamed because they executed their duties according to the existing procedures and regulations.

Partly to be blame, said Subramaniam, are the State lawmakers, the State assemblymen as they failed to rectify the Land Code.

“They should do something to prevent more land disputes from occurring. This is actually the root to the land issue problems that we are facing now.

“If the land policy is not going to be reviewed, I am worried that the indigenous people will gradually lose their native customary rights over their land.

“The problem here is the natives may have the rights over the land but every time if there is a dispute when other parties are being issued titles for the same plots of land, the natives will still lose their case because they don’t have the documents to prove that is their land,” he said.

Several people including the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Idris Jala have been calling on the state government to survey native customary rights land and issue titles to such land in order to solve the NCR land disputes.

Until now, the State government has not responded to the calls.

The dialogue was held following complaints by the villagers of Kampung Stenggang in Bau who have accused that the Land and Survey Department of allegedly “robbing” their native customary rights land and has leased them to a company without their knowledge.

The land which is about 1,986 hectares is within the vicinity of their village and the department has awarded provisional lease to a company.

They had lodged a complaint with several authorities including Human Rights Commission (SUHAKAM).

They had also lodged a Police report against the illegal encroachment of their land which they had cultivated many rounds for generations since 1920.



Banting said...

Infact Siva Subramaniam repeats what SUHAKAM state Commissioner, Dr. Mohd Herman Ritom Abdullah had said before, " The problem arises from the attitude of officers from government agencies who issues logging and plantation licences without doing detailed studies. They (government officers) should go down and inspect the areas for themselves and not depend on assumptions. Some licences were issued based only on maps causing companies to be unaware that they were logging and planting on customary land."

Mark said...

In Borneo POst this morning the Land and Survei is still fully dependent on their aerial photos to decide whether the land is cultivated or not. Note who decides.

white hair days numbered said...

Land n survey is directly under the CM. If he wants anything the LnS will be there.
But you see all the land at the road side needed to be converted to industrial land before you can develop it. If we submit for conversion, it takes ages. So many just ignore this steps and start to do what ever they like with their land. When you built any structure on your land, LnS comes and ask all sort of questions and the harassment begins. I have a personal encounter with them and I just tell them to piss off.

Anonymous said...

1 what use is there of a survey or not? Miri ncr surveyed 20-30 years still no title issued. The k*ing said they are all false claims so belong to him.

2. yes, your old folks waiting for decades can sell ncr now to 1swk fun*d (cheaply?) which can change name any moment.

3. what's up at Nyalau a PL includes kpg and road visible on 1950s air photo?

Anonymous said...

Try this:

Anonymous said...

Dr. Mohd Herman Ritom Abdullah ...come from KPg. Stenggang. His father was a penghulu..

Mata Kuching said...

The real traitors of the Malays, Dayaks, Orang Ulu and Penan, all of whom are Bumiputras of Sarawak, are the CM and his two deputies.Less than 15% of Sarawak bumiputras benefited from the affirmative policy of NEP. The bulk of the benefits which would have been able to benefit 85% of the bumiputras stopped at the door of Taib and his cronies.

The CM, since the time of Abdul Rahman Yacub has been holding the most important ministerial portfolio of natural resources and resourse planning. The Dayaks have been too happy with piece meal sub-standard developments. They allowed themselve to be socially and economically "enslaved" by Tun Rahman and Taib while the rest of the dayak YBs and law makers are abetting their heinous crimes against the rural folks.

We cannot defeat Taib without eliminating the present Dayak law markers and Ybs. DAP, PKR, PAS and SNAP are committed to help us but we need to entrust them with the power in our hands by voting for Pakatan Rakyat. We cannot save Malaysia when we cant even save our own land. Tuai Rumah and Penghulu must be brave to give up their government appointment for the sake of the community. Now is the time to bring the fight to Taib and BN government not by revolution but through the ballot box. Vote for Pakatan Rakyat.

Anonymous said...

the problem is, how many of us making noise here relay the message to the stupids and idiots who still vote and support BN? I believe if all of us here tell our stupid and idiot Dayaks, i believe nothing the present govt can do in the next election, except the malays and the melanaus will vote for them, iam sorry to go along racial line, it is a fact.
The Dayaks, why should we vote for BN when they have been forever robbing us Dayaks of our land. Do not sympathise with our hopeless Dayak leaders, they are traitors and robbers too.

Anonymous said...

Would you think they 'assemblymen' would do something to rectify the land code when they have 'interests' one way or another in most of the land leased out by Land & Survey dept?
All the time They know it but they just "let it" happen.