Perimeter surveys to take 161 years to finish at current rate, laments Julau MP

Datuk Larry Sng

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KUCHING, Nov 18: At the rate perimeter surveys for NCR land are going, Sarawak will need 161 years after the formation of Malaysia to resolve the issue.

In making this assertion, Julau MP Larry Sng pointed out that this estimation was based on the rate that only 8,653 hectares of individual lots were surveyed over a period of one year.

He thus questioned the Sarawak government’s commitment to resolve the native customary rights (NCR) land issue.

“Based on my findings, only 4.83 per cent of individual lots have been surveyed out of the total of 953,000 hectares of customary land under Section 6 of the Sarawak Land Code.

“On Nov 14, 2018, the state government informed that 28,807 hectares of individual lots were successfully surveyed.

“While on Nov 13, 2020, Sarawak announced that 46,113 hectares of individuals lots have been surveyed, which is 17,306 hectares surveyed within two years,” he highlighted during the debate on the Supply Bill 2021 in Parliament today.

Sng stressed that this meant only 8,653 lots were successfully surveyed in one year while there are 906,887 hectares of NCR land have yet to be surveyed under Section 18 of the Sarawak Land Code.

“What about land that has not been gazetted?

“I wonder if the federal government needs to double the allocation to help the Sarawak government in expediting the survey for customary land,” he added.

Sng pointed out that the issue on gazetting and land grants has been resolved in Peninsula, which has wider land and a larger population.

“Furthermore, as long as it is not gazetted, these customary lands will be encroached by logging and plantation companies.

“We are chasing after time because many of the previous generations have passed away. They are experienced in ‘garis menua’ (communal land boundaries), ‘pemakai menua’ (territorial rights) and ‘pulau galau’ (communal forest reserves),” he stressed.

Meanwhile, Sng thanked the federal government for allocating RM41 million for the land survey projects which was a major issue for the indigenous community. — DayakDaily