Sarawak Land Development Minister Tan Sri James Masing has reprimanded certain quarters in the state for thwarting efforts carried out to develop native customary rights (NCR) land.
He said, apart from accusing the government of trying to grab the people's land, these quarters had even stopped surveyors from carrying out land survey on NCR land of the people who wanted to participate in land development project.
"They accused the surveyors of trying to grab the people's land and chased them away. The thing is, they are not from the very area where the land is to be developed.
"If you don't want to develop your land, don't stop others from developing theirs. If you don't want the government to help develop the land of the people, then you should help the people to develop their land," he said.
Masing said this when launching NCR Land Development Project (Oil Palm Plantation) in Pasai Siong, more than 30km from in Sibu today.
He said because of the instigation by certain quarters, many NCR landowners were reluctant to participate in any land development.
He added that if their land were developed, not only would it increase in value and yield some income for them, the land would also be secured as they would be surveyed and given a title.
On the Pasai Siong land development project, Masing who spoke to reporters later said it was announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak during a visit to Rumah Sebastian Ungoh on May 13, 2010.
Carried out by Felcra Berhad, the land development on 5,700 ha belonging to more than 500 families from 30 longhouses would be made in five phases. – Bernama, March 13, 2016.