PAS submits memo on land woes

Kota Kinabalu: Opposition PAS will bring up the grouses of land applicants in Sabah in Parliament if the State Government is not willing to resolve the perennial problem faced by the people.

Its Land Development and Regional Bureau Chief, Mazlan Aliman said many villagers have complained to him about such problems.

He said he could not understand why the Government has not been able to settle the problem but compromise when huge corporations or companies applied for the land.

“I was in Kinabatangan recently and I was informed that some villagers who have planted oil palm on their land for years suddenly found that the property they applied for had been taken by companies from Semenanjung (West Malaysia),” he said.

He said this to reporters after handing over a memorandum to the Chief Minister’s Political Secretary Nizam Abu Bakar Titingan at Wisma Innoprise on Thursday.

Earlier, Mazlan, who is from the peninsula, had attempted to present the memorandum to Datuk Seri Musa Aman himself but the Chief Minister was not available.

He said if the people were denied of the land, they would not be able to continue their livelihood and support their families.

According to him, during the five days he has been here, he has heard countless complaints from villagers not only in Kinabatangan but also in Merotai and Keningau regarding companies given priority over the people where land applications are concerned.

He also said that he would suggest to Suhakam to set up a public inquiry over the matter so that an investigation could be carried out to probe the issue.

And if all that cannot produce the desired results, he said PAS would assist the people file their cases in the courts in Kuala Lumpur.

He said land cases have already been filed in the courts here but that it is taking a long time to be heard.

So, if the cases were brought to the courts in the nation’s capital, maybe only then the State Government would start bucking up, he said.

“Its just like the (Sarawak’s) Penan who were against the Bakun Dam project,” he said. He said when the case was brought over to Kuala Lumpur, only then the Sarawak Government scrambled to negotiate with the Penans.

On other developments, Mazlan said he visited the squatter water village at Ulu Kalumpang and was really surprised by the appalling conditions there.

“It is worse than any squatter area in the peninsulaÉit is like the place is 30 years backward,” he said.

Mazlan claimed the tsunami victims in West Malaysia were resettled in better houses with three bedrooms complete with electricity and other amenities.

Also present was Sabah PAS Youth information chief, Salman Mohd Amin

Source : http://www.dailyexpress.com.my/news.cfm?NewsID=71362

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