By Nancy Nais
BAU, Oct 23: After more than 10 years of waiting, retired police officer Diana Sayer’s dream to have his native customary right (NCR) land title became a reality.
Thanking the Sarawak government for the initiative to assist the Bidayuh-majority community in Bau, Diana, 58, from Kampung Selampit in Lundu, said it was worth the wait.
“I am grateful to the state government because they help to survey and issue the individual title to the landowners,” he said.
Diana was one of the 594 recipients who received their land title under Section 18 of the Sarawak Land Code from Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan at Bau Civic Centre, today.
Another recipient Frankton Bagat, 40, from Kampung Grogo, echoed the same. He was representing his wife Blender Fenny Nicholas who could not attend the event.
“We would like to thank the state government for their concern, commitment and ensuring that genuine NCR land owners would be given the titles,” Frankton said.
Since 2010, the state Land and Survey Department has surveyed a total of 2.21 million acres or 879,142 hectares of native customary rights (NCR) land.
Addressing the villagers, Awang Tengah said the new perimeter survey works on NCR land have proven to be more efficient than the previous exercise, which focused more on individual lots.
“This new initiative under Section 6 of Sarawak Land Code is proven to be more efficient. Compare to what we have achieve over the past 50 years (between 1960 and 2010), which was only 642,460 acres (260,000 hectares), this achievement is three times better,” he said.
He added that the state has spent RM161 million for perimeter survey since 2010.
Although the federal government knew that land is under state jurisdiction, Pakatan Harapan (PH) last two Budget never specifically mentioned about allocation for NCR perimeter survey, he continued.
“It was only after state government announced an additional allocation of RM40 million this year, then only Pakatan approved RM21.5 million for this purpose. However, Pakatan only released 50 percent or RM10.75 million of the RM21.5 million to carry out the NCR perimeter survey works,” he said.
Awang Tengah also acknowledged that there were certain quarters that opposed the new procedure and insisted that their land be surveyed and issued under Section 18 of Sarawak Land Code.
He urged the people not to believe the plot of some political parties that said the state government was dishonest in giving land titles and that it will be taken away.
“Only those with mental problem or brainless will believe in such horrid allegation. Ever since we survey land under Section 6 of Sarawak Land Code, none of them were grabbed by the state government for commercial purposes,” he claimed. — DayakDaily