Posted on March 11, 2011, FridaySERIAN: The current perimeter surveying of native customary rights (NCR) land is no political gimmick, said Second Minister of Planning and Resource Management Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hassan.
He said the NCR perimeter survey represented the government’s commitment to ensure land ownership.
As such, he said the people should not have the impression that this exercise was part of a political agenda.
Awang Tengah stressed that there is no need for the opposition to keep on harping over the same issue for their own political interest and accusing the BN government of being ‘dishonest” to the people of Sarawak.
“NCR issue is nothing new, and is always manipulated by the opposition for their political gain.
“But we will make sure the ongoing exercise is implemented consistently so that it will not be used by the opposition as the basis to instigate the people against the government,” the minister said.
He was speaking at the handing over of 366 land compensations and presentation of land titles amounting to a total of RM2.3 million to five villages at the meeting room, Ranchan Recreational Park yesterday.
The five villages are Kampung Tanah Mawang, Kampung Krangan, Kampung Telakong, Kampung Antayan Kropok and Kampung Senggai Mawang.
They were affected by three development projects, namely the construction of the road to Kampung Sumai Limau, Samarahan, road upgrading at Kampung Mujat, Mongkos and the Slabi Water Treatment Extension Plant.
He also took pains to explain to the people that the state government has never freely grabbed their land over the years.
He repeatedly stressed the salient point for more than three times saying: “The state government never acquires the NCR land for free.
“The government will pay compensation to those who are affected according to the market price.”
Awang Tengah, who is also the Minister of Public Utilities, said the land taken by the state government has never been exploited for the wrong cause but it is for the benefit of the rakyat. “The land will be developed to build roads.
“With accessibility we can bring more developments – schools, electricity and water supply. These are just the basic amenities. The primary objective is to make the land more valuable when it is developed.”
He added that the state government has identified at least 100 more land perimeter surveying for development purposes.
He cited Bakun Dam area whereby the land was economically less-valued before the present impoundment stage.
Awang Tengah added that under National Key Results Area (NKRA), the major infrastructure development will solely focus on Sarawak and it is an on-going process.
“Under the Tenth Malaysia Plan, Sarawak is allocated RM2 billion to upgrade the rural area roads, RM1.5 million for water supply and RM1.7 million for electricity.”
By now, the people of Sarawak should be able to make comparison and make judgment on the development brought into their place, and not just an empty promise.
“The politics of development is what we are having now and it is for the sake of people’s development,” he said.
Among those present during the land compensation and presentation of land titles were Assistant Minister of Planning and Resource Management Mohd Naroden Majais, Kedup assemblyman Frederick Bayoi Manggie and Samarahan Division Land and Survey Superintendent, Taib Belal.