Tuesday, March 13

16 tractors torched by Iban landowners

KUCHING:   Sixteen excavators/tractors worth several million ringgits belonging to Tabong Haji (TH) were alleged to have been torched by Iban landowners early this morning.

The incident happened between Kpg. Temiang and Kpg. Keniong, Simunjan/Punda road, Simunjan.

More than 300 landowners from about 20 longhouses were alleged to have been present in the area. So far five persons have been arrested.

The majority of 300 landowners insisted of being arrested in order to show their solidarity and at the same time they wanted to be fed by the Police.

A spokesman for the landowners said that Tabong Haji and its workers have been warned not to encroach into their land and to destroy their farms and fruit trees.

Several Police reports have been lodged against Tabong Haji, but the Police have not responded to their complaints.

Two weeks ago, the landowners brought their case to the Human Rights Commission Malaysia (Suhakam) in a public hearing in Serian.

Contacted by FMT, Dominique Ng, a legal counsel for the landowners said that he was informed that 16 excavators or tractors were burnt, pointing out that it could be the work of the workers themselves in order to put the blame on the landowners.

He said that the landowner had accused the TH of relentless and illegal encroachments into their NCR land despite many protests by the natives and continued to destroy their farms and fruit trees.

Ng, the former Padungan assemblyman said that it was also the same area where Rimunan Hijau had amicably settled the dispute with the landowners in court.

Ng was their lawyer.

Several NCR land cases in Sarawak are involved TH and Pelita, many of which are pending hearing in the High Court.

Meanwhile, the Officer in Charge of Simunjan Police station was not available for comment.


Anonymous said...

Stupid to alleged that Tabung Haji torched their own tractors. Whatever it is, whoever torched the tractors much be brought to court to face justice.

Iban Lingga said...

What has the state government and its enforcement agencies like police, resident`s office, Land & Survey Dept. and Forest Dept. done to prevent repeated incidents will take place in future?

Recently, we had two similar incidents occurred in Ulu Sebangan, Simunjan and in Tebedu whereby villagers were allegedly torched the logging company`s camps, heavy machinery and trucks for operating a logging camp on their native customary land.

I am in the opinion that if the government and its agencies just ignore the villagers numerous of police reports, they feel they are being offended and being degraded thinking that the agencies are siding the company. As a result, the villagers take the law into their own hands.

May be the government agencies concerned can call for dialogue session between them, the villagers and the timber contractors to find out the best solution to overcome the problems. At least the villagers are happy with that rather than just ignore their plights.

Iban rumah panjai said...

The government agencies and departments involved needed to be more pro-active in dealing with the problems of intrusion into Native Customary Land by logging and plantation companies in Sarawak. I quote the statement issue by SUHAKAM as reported by Bernama " They (villagers) made over 100 police reports at the station on land intrusions but not only has there been no action taken but those who made the reports were interrogated like criminals." That was how similar incident could happen again because the plights of villagers were ignored by the authority.

As usual the police will give the statement that they are investigating the case under section 435 of the Penal Code for committing mischief by fire or explosive substance.

In Ulu Sebangan case, the accused persons were acquitted and discharged while the incident in Tebedu the case was settled amicably between the timber contractor and the villagers.

Anonymous said...

im sorry but taking the law into your own hands is wrong! you are then no better than the enemy, you give them good PR, you make them stronger.

protest through other ways, chain yourselves to the tractor so it cant move! lay down infront of the tractor so they have to commit murder before they can do the work its intended for!! but setting it alight is crazy.

you then lose all your credibility. i know the Iban love to sing karaokee, so find out where the workers are staying, play your misic extra loud at 3am, keep them awake so they are tired next day, mess with their brains not their equipment and you will win your battle i promise.

look to how King and Ghandi fought and won their wars, learn from history and you too will win your war to get your lands back i promise.

Anonymous said...

First of all, punish the Tabung Haji for trespassing and illegal extraction of timber from the dayak NCR land. Law is there not to play double-standard but to protect everybody.

Go dayak go, have no fear and protect your land at any cost; be it by torching, or violence .

shoe polisher said...

To anonymous,why did you say it's stupid to allege that Tabung haji torched their own tractors.You are too innocence to think that it is not possible.Crooks have many ways to cheat.After all they can claim for insurance for the tractors and at the same time trying to silence the natives.Killing two birds with one stone mah.ayooo

Anonymous said...

Come on, we are talking about sea dayak land here before even james brooke opened a mining concession in simunjan! Who are these towkays who send their tractors and workers to destroy cultivated land???? The government and all it entails regulate access and use of dayak land and therein ends the role of government, firmly in the pockets of these towkays and their native politicians. If the kongsi's want a war, then this is it. Jangan lawan towkay!

Apai Semalau said...

My question is, who owns or heads Tabung Haji? Is TH a business venture, a religious body or a charitable organisation. Maybe someone would like to do a search and enlighten us on whether this organisations memorandum includes indulging in "haram" extraction of logs and trespassing instead of the legitimate "haji" guideline in business investments?

Kua' Ak Nuan said...

Tanah NCR, tanah pusaka.
Mempertahankan tanah NCR dah hak kita. Tak ditahan nanti habis dibaham oleh lanun. Dibuat Report Polis tidak ada di endah juga. Adu pada YB, YB pun takut bertindak apatah lagi mau bersuara dan membantu, itu jauh sekali. Takut kerusi hilang bila pilihanraya nanti, tidak dicalonkan.
Dibuat blockage, Polis pun dipihak penyangak, bukan nya berpihak pada tuan punya tanah NCR.
Ada undang-undang tapi tanah NCR tidak dilindungi.
Lama-kelamaan nanti, orang dayak akan seperti orang Indian di USA, tiada hak lagi.

Anonymous said...

Tabung Hj as a religious body which aims to promote a better life in heaven to believers is making it dificult to believe heaven exist when they are creating hell on earth to the poor.Perhaps they are ammassing wealth on earth to have a better life in heaven? I doubt that very much so don't complain when vehicles you use to opress are torched!!