Thursday, December 16, 2010
Pehin Sri - Bako land issue may be resolved in two months’ time
by Geryl Ogilvy Ruekeith. Posted on December 14, 2010, Tuesday
KUCHING: The long-standing Bako land issue might finally come to an end soon as the government planned to come out with a formula and resolve it amicably.
What appeared to be a never ending saga between the land owners with the state regarding the compensation for the acquired land would be settled once the right formula has been agreed upon.
Met by reporters after attending a dialogue with some 450 Chinese community leaders at Pullman Hotel here last night, Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud said: “We hope to have the formula ready by February (2011).
“The issue is not as simple as one would think, as it is a big area. To make matters worse the owners have become impatient as certain quarters had politicised the issue.”
Declining to elaborate further, Taib assured that the issue would be dealt with once and for all. Last week, it was reported that the Bako Land Protem Committee hoped the state government would seriously look into the matter as the landowners were not happy with the ‘unsatisfactory compensations’.
The land in question spans a total of some 3,000 acres in the Bako peninsular.
The government acquired it in September this year.
The landowners felt that the proposed compensations of between RM40,000 and RM80,000 per acre for land leases issued before and after 1973 were deemed as grossly unreasonable.
These landowners also opined that the compensation rates indicated by the Land and Survey Department (LSD) during an enquiry session on Oct 4 were far lower than the current market value.
Some even claimed that their properties were worth at least RM200,000 per acre.
The dialogue last night was organised by the Federation of Kuching-Samarahan Divisions Chinese Associations.
Taib spent about two hours discussing mostly on the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) regarding the Bako land issue. Other issues were also discussed.
Divided into two parts, the next dialogue session would be held on Dec 17.
Key issues to be discussed include Chinese schools and education.
Among those present were Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Dr George Chan, State Secretary Datuk Amar Morshidi Ghani, Housing and Urban Development Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg, Malaysia BIMP-EAGA council chairman Dato Wee Hong Seng and Committee of School Board of Directors Chung Hua Primary School 1-6 chairman Dr Chou Chii Ming.