Wednesday, September 8

Blatant disregard for Native rights

SEBUYAU: A group of villagers headed by activists Nicholas Mujah and Numpang Anak Suntai has accused the Forest Department of blatant disregard for their customary rights over their ‘pulau galau’ (communal forest) situated between Sungai Sebangan and Sungai Sebuyau when it refuses to suspend a licence issued to a logging company.

“The department has been informed by the Land and Survey department through a letter that the area is confirmed to be native customary rights land.

“Yet the forest department does not take action against the company, the quality concrete holdings, which continues to log trees in the communal forest,”
said Mujah, who is secretary general of Sarawak Dayak Iban Association in a letter of complaint to SUHAKAM.

“The logging activities have destroyed a large number of our rubber and fruit trees and cash crops,” he said, pointing out that such activities will also disturb their shrines, graveyards and their sources of incomes.

He said: “The logging activities will also pollute the people’s source of drinking water as well as disturbing the habitat of some of the protected animals such as the proboscis monkeys, orang utan, hornbills, deer and peacock.”

The area is also the home of some of the rarest species of timber such as belian (iron wood) and selangan batu which fetch up to RM4,000 a tonne.

Five longhouses namely Kampung Entangor, Kpg. Sungai Ijok, Kpg. Arus, Kpg. Tungkah Dayak and Kpg. Ensika are directly affected by the logging activities.

“All these are clear violation of the rights of the villagers and environmental hazards” he said, calling on SUHAKAN to carry out an immediate investigation into the violation of human rights by the Forest Department and the company.

Meanwhile, SADIA has also received complaints that certain Penghulu and longhouse chiefs had allegedly received some “kickbacks” from the company for their cooperation.

“If this is true, then both the company and longhouse chiefs have committed corruption,” he said and urged the Resident Office of Kota Samarahan to investigate the claim.

His group, he said, would lodge a report with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to investigate the giving and receiving of “kickbacks” as well as against the Forest Department for refusing to suspend the licence it issued to the company.

The trouble between Quality Concrete Holdings and the natives began in April this year when the company received a licence from the Forest Department to log timber in 3,305 ha of communal forests in Bukit Salbu, Bukit Birut, Bukit Bederi, Bukit Bekutu, Bukit Ijok and Bukit Sandong.

Despite their protests and blockades, the company and the forest department continue to bulldoze their way to the communal forest.

The licence is expected to expire by the end of the year.


Sri Belalang said...

Perhaps there are elements of corruption. Report it to MACC.

Anonymous said...

As long as corrupted BN still in powerthe probelms wil go on and on, so vote them out

crooks said...

Blockade all the roads and ask reporters to go there. Put up banners and reveal the owners of QC.Tiang Ming Sing is known to do such thing. From construction to logging, he must use his connection with white hair sister to plunder . As we all know white hair is on his last few furlongs, all his cronies and relatives have started to maximize their stealing.

Banting said...

Sorry out of topic.

I have tried many times to visit RPK`s blog, but to to avail until I read Yahoo news as follows:-

Malaysia Chronicle it looks like Malaysia Today may have been a victim of the latest government crackdown on the Internet. The popular political blog operate by the controversial Raja Petra Kamarudin is now up again but most parts of Tuesday, it was locked out disappointing its hordes of followers.

Was RPK`s Malaysia Today hacked because of Tajuddin Ramli, Yahoo asked?