Villagers complain of non-payment of compensation
by Yunus Yussop. Posted on November 9, 2010, Tuesday
BINTULU: Residents of Sungai Asap, Belaga Resettlement Scheme expressed unhappiness and disappointment over the non-payment of compensation promised to them for giving way to the construction of Bakun Dam.
Leaving behind houses, farms, ancestral lands and other properties when they moved out of Hulu Balui in 1998, they claimed that each family was asked to pay RM50,000 for the longhouse unit, in which they stay now.
Waiting for compensation payment which was promised to be between RM20,000 and RM50,000 per door was like hoping for something uncertain, they lamented.
The people’s disappointment was related by ‘Maren-Maren Uma’ (longhouse chiefs) of Sungai Asap Resettlement Scheme chairman Ellison Duren Lihan, who said they had been strong supporters of the government.
According to him, residents from 15 affected longhouses consisting of about 1,300 doors demanded that the compensation be paid with interest from the time they moved out.
They also did not agree that part of the compensation be used to pay for the new houses.
“We do not agree that our compensation be cut in order to pay for the houses in Sg Asap Resettlement scheme and it should be free,” he said.
The affected residents also requested that they be allocated land for agricultural purposes without charge.
Duren said that an official letter would be forwarded to the Kapit Resident soon.
The letter, he said, would be signed by 15 village chiefs including himself, representing Uma Bawang, Edok Maring (Uma Balui Liko), Lajang Nyipa (Uma Lahanan), Batang Langat (Uma Kedap), Datin Sri Debong Anyi (Uma Nyaving), Liah Japi (Uma Daro), Dun Imang (Uma Kulit), Ding Ajang (Uma Belor), Lating Abun (Uma Balui Ukap), Padan Bisau (Uma Bakah), Nyaban Kulleh (Uma Badeng), Minggu Magui (Uma Penan Talun), Donny Talik (Uma Juman), Huvat Laing (Uma Lesong) and Ngarik Lijap (Uma Ukit).