Gerawat Jala: We take our promises to the rakyat seriously

I refer to the FB posting by Roland Engan asking the Baram people to stop Perimeter Survey under Sect. 6 of the S’wak Land Code and challenging myself, YB Datu Dr Penguang and YB Dennis to get the Sarawak government to recognise and gazette agreed and fixed communal boundaries.

His reason for stopping Sect.6 Perimeter Survey (which I shall refer here as NCR Perimeter Survey)is that the status of the land surveyed under Sect.6 will be down graded. It is not clear what he meant by down graded. If he is saying that the land has lost it’s status as NCR land after it has been gazetted under Sect.6, then he is either confused or deliberately misleading the Baram people on the objective of the NCR Perimeter Survey under Sect.6.

Under Sect.6, the customary law of the people relating to acquisition, transfer and transmission of their rights shall apply to such gazetted area. Survey and gazetting of NCR land under Sect.6 is to facilitate and expedite the issue of individual title under Sect 18 to the individual land owners.

The NCR Perimeter Survey and it’s subsequent gazetting is documentary proof issued by the Land and Survey to recognise the right of the people to the land for whom it has been gazetted. The government cannot give or alienate land surveyed and gazetted under Sect.6 to any body unless the government go through the process of acquisition of land as provided by the Sarawak Land Code and pay adequate compensation for such acquisition.

There are many cases where NCR Survey under Sect.6 has been gazetted and subsequently issued with Sect.18 title to individual land owners whose land is within the area surveyed and gazetted under Sect.6. I would like to challenge Roland Engan to show myself, YB Dato Dr Penguang Manggil and YB Dennis Ngau, any area surveyed and gazetted under Sect.6 where the status of the land and rights of the people has been downgraded resulting in such land being taken by the government or lost to the government as is frequently alleged.

Roland Engan and his PH colleagues has no right to stop the Baram people from having their NCR land surveyed and gazetted under Sect.6 so that their individual land title to their land within the gazetted area can be issued under Sect.18. Let the Baram people decide for themselves as they know what and who to believe based on track record of delivering on promises and past experience.

Do not deny the rights of those rakyat Baram who wish to have their NCR land surveyed and gazetted under Sect.6. The government respect the decision of those who do not wish to have their NCR land surveyed and gazetted under Sect.6. However the minority in any longhouse or village should not stop Sect.6 Survey of the longhouse or village NCR if the majority and their leaders wish to proceed with such survey and gazette.

Roland Engan’s challenge to myself, YB Datu Dr Penguang Manggil and YB Dennis Ngau to get the State government to recognise and gazette traditional village boundaries is just a political ploy to be seen as a champion of the Baram people. There is no point throwing a challenge which you yourself cannot deliver. PH is good at stirring issues and problems among the rakyat of Baram but they do not solve problems.

They even want to challenge appointments of certain of our Orang Ulu Ketua Kaums in court, which is unprecedented in our Orang Ulu community and history. Why should we let the courts decide who our Ketua Kaums and should be unless PH have completely lost respect for our Adat or deliberately choose to ignore our Adat. This is a very destructive attitude which will affect the unity and harmony of our Orang Ulu community and should be resisted.

GPS ADUNs listen to the rakyat and not just the aggressive and loud minority. We promise what is within the law and can be delivered for the rakyat because we take our promises to the rakyat very seriously.

YB Dato Gerawat Gala
Timbalan Speaker DUN
ADUN N.78-Mulu