Violet Yong the DAP Assemblyperson for Pending make some inquiries about the land grabs in Sarawak eg the Bako issue-but the inquiry was not recorded in th4 state assembly official record-the Hansard. But surely they can’t cover up the inquiry-so we reproduce her speech here. A note is: the Bako issue give the urban folks a taste of what interior folks have been suffering for decades. May be the urban folks will find a common ground to fight for relief with the interior folks?
Monday, November 8, 2010
Dewan Speech delivered on 4.11.2010 touching on CM’s family’s wealth and Sarawak Report
Attending DUN is always considered one of a vital duty for me as a people’s representative. This is the time when I would forward the grievances of the people to the Government. It has always been a challenge for us few in the Opposition to tell the unfair policies, point out the wrongs of the government and to ask for the people’s needs as we are the minority.
When I read out my text of speech in the Dewan last Thursday i.e. 4.11.2010, it was not smooth sailing. I was interrupted many times by the Speaker, Bawang Assan ADUN Wong Soon Koh and Pelagus ADUN Larry S’ng in particular when I touched on the nerves’ issues on the wealth of Chief Minister’s family members. But I told myself, the truth has to be told for the people’s sake.
I have the feeling that the BN state government is so scared that the truth be known to the people, the Hansard for my speech recorded on 4.11.2010 is still not furnished to all members until today.
Below is my text of speech I read in the Dewan on Thursday and the occasion interruption which I wanted to share with all Sarawakians.
I have to bring to your attention the seriousness of the grabbing of land in Sarawak by you-all-know-who.
So many parcels of land have been taken away, land that belonged to the State that is rightfully owned by all the people of Sarawak and should be used for building hospitals, schools, roads or sport facilities. But, NO, in the “Name of Urban Development”, these lands are taken away right under our nose and given to private cronies companies to enrich themselves.
Private lands are now being grabbed by the BN State Government without fair compensation parcel by parcel. One stark example is the Bako lands where 3,000 acres of land that has been and still is until today subject to Section 47.
(At this junction I was interrupted as they want to know who I am referring to. I told them, “ you be patient. I will let you know who later. keep your ears clear and clean”) since 38 donkey years ago are now going to be taken away by the BN state government without fair, reasonable and adequate compensation paid to landowners
Most of the lands are purchased through people hard-earned money and some from savings of their old parents. Many landowners bought the lands with high expectation of developing the lands or cultivating the lands for fruits gardens, or otherwise dealing with the lands when eventually the blanket Section 47 imposition is lifted. (at this junction, I was interrupted again and I said: I will let you know later on.) But now, the BN leaders in the state have stolen their dreams and hopes they had harboured.
There is no transparency in the whole process of the acquisition exercise of Bako lands. (Interrupted again and I said I will let you know later on, I will name all the names. You just be patient. Keep it as a surprise.)
The true intention of acquisition is not made clear to the landowners until today. Is there something to hide? The State Government never makes known to the people of its detailed development plan in acquiring 3000 acres of Bako lands. The people want to know why the State Government takes away 3000 acres of lands at one go? If indeed there is a development project, why don’t the government reveal it? The state government should also inform the public when will the project start? Who are the developers developing these lands? How do the people benefits from the development scheme?
Or like always the case, will these lands going to be another parcel of land like in Batu Lintang and BDC which are alienated to CM’s son, daughters and cousin?
If the BN state government continues with such high handed manner when it comes to land acquisition, who dares to come to Sarawak to invest? Hantu also takut. (Again interruption. I said, I am telling the facts here. Don’t try to cover up the facts for the Chief Minister). The practice of this unfair policy will frighten foreign investors away. How can the people feel safe when the landed properties own by private individual or sectors are worthless when their lands can overnight ended in the hands of the cronies and friends of the BN leaders? ( More interruption from others but I ignored them and read on)
The offers of compensation of RM40,500.00 to RM80,900.00 per acre by the Sarawak state government which are not based on current market value of lands is an insult to anyone’s intelligent. It is unfair and unreasonable for the state government to offer compensation based on value in 1973 ( Interuption again from a few when s.47 was imposed. It is the talk of the town now that the State Government only knows how to makan the rakyat lands and give them to their relatives and cronies. The people cried foul that it is “Daylight robbery” and I would say it is clear case of exploitation of the people of Sarawak.
Is this the caring and responsible government you all professed to be? Are you not ashamed of taking away again and again from your own Sarawakians, your very own subjects? Do you just take a map of Sarawak and drew a ‘red line’ and said “Oh, I want this, my brothers want this and yes, my sisters need this piece and that A,B,C company or Naim wants that, then you mark it under Section 47, or 48 or whatever it is to make it YOURs. Is this how the government is being run? Exploiting the subjects who had worked for the State all these years.
The present Land code has not benefit the land owners (More interruption and I told them that I will move on to another subject but I continue reading my text) in any way except for the top BN leaders and cronies. It is sad to see that the BN state government has abused the law to enrich themselves. Over the years, we DAP and the people had through their votes told and reminded the Sarawak State government to amend all the unfair provisions in the Land Code including the Section 47 and yet the calls have all fallen to deaf ears.
And now, the self claimed caring and responsible BN government tells the landowners that nothing much can be done because the law provides so. Everything we do we have to follow the law. It is obvious that the present Land Code has been subject to abuse by the BN leaders.
The arrogant government officer even challenges the people to take the matter to court if the landowners are not happy with the decision of the government. Do you think that you are the government and you can simply do whatever you want and even held the landowners to ransom? Do not think that the people are stupid and would believe and accept what the BN leaders said. DAP had thought the people smart and the people are not so easily get cheated by the sweet talks and lies of the BN leaders.
The Bako land owners wants the compensation paid based on current market value instead of that of 1973. At the same time, they have also put forward a suggestion that if the State government is really interested to develop their lands, they want a share in it.
The land owners who met up with me recently said if truly there is a development plan for Bako area, they are ready to be involved in the development of their lands. I would say it is extremely unfair to exclude them from the development scheme since they are the rightful owners to the lands for all these years. The development of Sarawak should not be allowed to concentrate in the hands of few of the cronies companies of the BN leaders. Why don’t the state government invite all interested landowners to take part in the so called “Urban Development Scheme” and have a share on the economic pie?
If not because of the imposition of the blanket Section 47 on Bako lands by the state government since 1973, I verily believe that the area would have fully developed by the landowners themselves over these years. The state government is to be blamed for all opportunity loss as well as monetary loss suffered by the landowners of their investment in Bako lands.
May I also suggest to the State Government that another possible way to solve the compensation issue for lands in Bako that are subject to Section 47 notification is that the state government could uplift the Section 47 notification first and then impose Section 48 notification so that compensation can be based on current market value and not market value in 1973.
I sincerely urge the BN leaders to listen to the voice of the people and adopt this suggestion. For once, do leave a legacy behind for the people of Sarawak.
Alienation of 269 Acres of Lands in BDC to CM’s children
Still on the land issue. Do you know the discovery on three parcels of state lands with a total area of 269 acres known as Lot Nos. 9192, 9193 and 9194 Block 11 all of Muara Tebas Land District in BDC area have been alienated to a dormant company called Monarda Sdn. Bhd. at an obscene low price?
These three parcels of land of 269 acres are in prime area in BDC area. A land, every developer would love to own. It would be a ‘gold mine’ for mixed development. Any developer would love to get it at RM78, 647,112.00 million and earn hundreds and hundreds of millions from it. The said sum of RM78 million is not paid by cash but in kind.
While the Bako land owners are crying for their lands lost due to unfair Land law and policies of the Sarawak Government, Monarda Sdn. Bhd. a dormant company is laughing all the way to the bank as the RM78 million land is actually worth more than RM500 million. In other words, if we do a simple calculation, the lands in BDC can easily fetch between RM2 to RM2.5 million have been alienated to Monarda at only RM291,000 per acre. This is really “lelong” land.
Let me tell you who owns Monarda Sdn. Bhd. You want to know. son of Chief Minister, This dormant company belongs to the eldest daughter of the Chief Minister, Jamilah Hamidah Taib owns 12 shares, President of SUPP, Tan Sri George Chan’s daughter, Anisa Hamidah Abdullah alias Chan Wai Kuen owns 12 shares, youngest daughter of Chief Minister, Hanifah Hajar Taib, 12 share, eldestMahmud Abu Bekir Taib who owns the biggest share of 52 and another crony who owns 12 share. (at this junction, interruption start again) I said, I am standing by the people to this Dun demanding for an answer from the state government as to why are the state government did not alienate this land through an open tender, which the state can earn revenue RM500 million. Ok, We want the Government to give us an answer why Monarda can have this parcel of land.
It is injustice and sickening to see state lands parcel by parcel being grabbed and given cheaply away on a silver platter. I hope something can be done.
You are the government of the day. Do something decent for the people. Do not ‘grab’ all and leave crumbs for the people to fight over it.
Senior Citizens Appreciation program
Within two years of taking over, Pakatan ruled Penang State Government led by YAB Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng under the CAT Policy (Competency, Accountability and Transparency) has generously given out RM100 annually to every senior citizen above 60 under the Senior Citizens Appreciation Program.
I wondered why Sarawak, a Barisan Nasional State Government led by YAB Chief Minister for the past thirty years with rich resources of oil, gas, timber, lands to name a few could not afford a sen to their senior citizens. What a failure and shameful Sarawak State government.
The Sarawak BN State Government often claims that it has insufficient funds to provide or improve the welfare and interest of the people and also always threaten the people that if the BN State Government gives freely to its people, the State will go broke. What a joke?
The Sarawak Government’s revenue is 6 times that of Penang Government. If Penang State Government could do it, why can’t Sarawak state government?
This is the failure of the State Government. It goes to show how selfish and how much the State government cares for the people. There is hardly any appreciation at all for people of all walks of life unless you are lucky to be one of the cronies or related to the first family of the State.
On the other hand, we keep reading reports in Sarawak Report website about the immense wealth amassed by the family of the Honourable Chief Minister of Sarawak in Canada, US, and UK, Australia, the wealth that most families (at this point I was stopped by the Speaker)
Speaker: This one I have to stop you. You can only do so unless you answer me. Are you the author of Sarawak report? He then turned off the mike making it impossible for the August House to hear me.
Me: You have to on the mike, let me answer it and record it. We want to ask the Chief Minister to answer is this true? If not true, the Chief Minister should explain.
Speaker: Are you the author, are you the author of this website?
Speaker: Are you giving information.
Me: I am not giving information, I want the Chief Minister to explain why all these allegation and he has been keeping silent about it. Let me speak. Let me finish this.
Speaker: Can you erase the statement…..
At this juncture, I hold our DAP leaflet reporting on the allegations made in Sarawak Report and showed it to the members of the Dewan.
Me: The people want an answer. Taib, we want answer. We are not saying this is true. If this is not true, let the Chief Minister say so. You don’t have to protect the Chief Minister.
Speaker: That is Rocket and it is only for DAP members. You are breaching the law of KDM.
Me: No, No, this is for everyone. This is not Rocket. This is a leaflet. This is not Rocket. I will move on to next point. Don’t be so scared of Sarawak Report.
On the issue of refund of land premiums. SUPP never stop lying to the people and keep fooling the people around.
When the previous land policy on land premium was announced in 2007, SUPP leaders had been going around telling and persuading landowners especially those in Kenyalang Park to quickly pay up. SUPP leaders told the people that the renewal premium is the cheapest they could find in Malaysia and if they do not do so, the premium could increase higher.
Because of SUPP lies, the landowners were being hoodwinked to pay up the renewal land premium.
See now, what happen, after new revised rate of land premium was announced during the Sibu By-Election by the Chief Minister thinking that it will fish more votes for BN, sorry to say the tactic failed miserably, the land premium refund issue has turned into a sandiwara for SUPP who set up booth in front of Kenyalang Theatre for two consecutive Sundays to collect information from the landowners who had paid the land premium under previous policy to seek for refund. What a joke?
Land & Survey Department is able to furnish me with the data and information complete with lot number, house number, shop number, dates of application and approval of the land lease renewal data of those landowners in Kenyalang, SUPP, being a hopeless ruling party could not do so. What is more shameful is the leaders of SUPP have now self-downgraded to become the agent of Land & Survey Department, filing forms for public. (Interruption from Bawang Assan. I asked, what point? I am not scare of you. What is your point of Order. If you cant find a point of Standing Order, sit down. I am not giving way. Wasting my time.) Wong still making a lot of noise in the background as I continued reading for a while.
SUPP was just seeking for political mileage. SUPP being the government, why need to collect data which was already in their files and the archive of the Land & Survey Department? Is SUPP so desperate that they have to force the people to go through them?
It irked me when the party’s president came out with an irresponsible statement that only those landowners who applied through SUPP are entitled to the refund.
Is it very difficult for the BN state government to come out with a policy in refunding all moneys which are due to the people? Or is SUPP too scare to tell the Chief Minister or too afraid to antagonize the CM to let him know what the people want?
If the State Government allows and is prepared to alienate 269 acres of state lands at obscenely cheap price to CM’s children company’s Monarda Sdn. Bhd. by letting go the profits of about RM500 million had the land alienated through public tender system, there is no reason for the State Government for not willing to return what actually belong to the people. Is the State Government trying to steal or rob from the people who now mostly live under desperation?
(Interruption from Bawang Assan on Standing Order. I said, Point of Order, Cite point of Order. Not enough. You need to read the Standing Order. If Speaker not going to extend my time, I am not going to give way. Then Bawang Assan start explaining. I said, You can do it in the Ministerial reply. Don’t answer now. Let me finish.)
If there is a refund, refund the money now. All those who have overpaid would be more willing to go to Land and Survey to collect the refund. The people do not need the supp to be the postman. OK, not need, they can go to the land and survey if there is refund policy.
It is really sickening to see the SUPP leaders fooling the people as clowns for their act in gaining their political mileage. It is just too cheap. Have some dignity and pride. I urged, supp leaders like Bawang Assan and Piasau to go back to the Chief Minister and get him to refund the people who had overpaid if you are not the puppets of the Chief Minister.
Jalan Song Fly-Over
The beautiful trees which formed the boulevard along Jalan Tun Jugah had been chopped off on June 2009 with the promise of an overhead flyover to ease the traffic jam. (Bawang Assan still going on and on and I said, I am on another point already)
While the Kuching people were deprived of the over 200 beautiful trees in exchange for a promise of a smooth flow of traffic along the area, they were greatly disappointed because up to this day, they had not only lost beautiful trees but there was no flyover.
It is common to see traffic jam along the stretch from the Airport to the junction of Jalan Jugah/Jalan Song to Simpang Tiga and Jalan Mendu in the peak hours of the morning and late afternoon.
Since the trees had been chopped in mid 2009, till today, what greets us when we use the road is just a barren stretch of road.
The contractor who also promised to build the Tar College in Bintangor (of course is a lie we know) has taken the initiative to chop off the beautiful trees and then ridiculously charged the Kuching City South the exorbitant sum of RM7.5 million and promised that the project would be completed in 6 to 8 months. What happen to the project now? Where is the Jalan Song/Jalan Tun Jugah flyover as promised? The people also want to know what happen to all the trees that chopped down? Have them all been swallowed? Of course, the people also want to know who foot the bill of RM7.5 million charged to MBKS?
And I understand that Infrastructure Development and Communications Minister had through the media said that the project was delayed due to lack of fund. If the government is really lack of fund why then the government still goes against the people’s will in building the 12 dams within the State, why built this RM300 million Dun Building and 100 storey Mega Tower in Kuala Lumpur? These are all “White Elephant projects”, a true wastage of taxpayers’ money which benefited CMS, Naim and cronies and friends of BN leaders.
It is always the case when it comes to the people welfare and interest, government always don’t have money. Certain things that need to be attended to in order to make life easier for the people always come last as most of you in this August House do not know the nightmare of waking up early or getting caught in the jam. Do you call this “Rakyat Didahulukan Pencapaian Diutamakan”? The government who are elected by the people should understand the people’s need and set the priorities correct. True developments are developments that can benefit the people and not the pockets of friends and cronies of the BN leaders.
Most of you here are chauffeur-driven during peak traffic hours and some even have the privilege to travel with outriders like our CM, did not know or have to go through the hardship felt by the ordinary people. Try doing it a month, give your drivers a break, stop travelling with outriders and see for yourself what a nightmare it is driving along Jalan Tun Jugah at peak hours. You will only understand if you have been caught in the jam daily.
Hence, I urge the state government to carry out their promises to the people by bringing back the building of the flyover at Jalan Song and Jalan Tun Jugah intersection without further delay.
Lastly, since Tuan Speaker had rejected all the questions which Honourable Member from Kota Sentosa submitted two weeks before, I am now adopting all the questions as my issues for my debate. Sorry to say the Chief Minister and all government servants involved have to burn the midnight oil and furnish all answers to this August House for each and every Question asked. Never try to run away from the people. The people demands truth to be revealed.
To ask the Honourable Chief Minister to state: (Interruption by the Speaker again refusing to let me raised the questions. Me: It is my issue. We want answer. The people want an answer. Why not? This is my debate and issue).
1. To ask the Honourable Chief Minister to state:
(a) The total costs of Sarawak International Medical Centre (SIMC) to the Sarawak State Government, including the building costs, equipment costs and administrative and financial costs;
(b) What are the terms of the takeover of SIMC by the Federal Government from the Sarawak State Government?
2. To ask the Honourable Chief Minister to state:
(a) In the last 15 years, the list of the parcels of land alienated to companies whose shareholders consist of the son, daughter, brothers and/or sister of the Honourable Chief Minister and the acreage of these parcels of land;
(b) The premium charged by the State Government for the alienation of such land to these companies; (Interruption again by Speaker. I am not. We are asking queries and want answer. Why are you so Scared Mr. speaker. We are asking question and let me speak).
(c) Are these land alienated to these companies through open tender? If not, what are the reasons for alienating these parcels of land to these companies?
3. To ask the Honourable Chief Minister to state:
(a) The total amount expended by the State government in 1st Silicon (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd since its inception, including the salvage exercise carried out by the Government in the merger exercise with X-Fab;
(b) How much is the Government paying annually for the settlement of the debts taken over by the Government from 1st Silicon (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd (Honorary Minister, can you give answers and not thesis).
(c) The total amount of loss suffered by the Government in its venture in 1st Silicon (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd;
(d) The detailed reason for such losses; and
(e) Whether the government intends to set up an enquiry committee answerable directly to the Dewan Undangan Negeri to investigate into the 1st Silicon (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd scandal.
5. To ask the Honourable Chief Minister to state:
(a) the rationale for agreement to supply 600MW of electricity to Press Metal Berhad at the price of RM0.10/KwH while the average costs of generation and transmission of electricity by Sarawak Energy Berhad is RM0.20/KwH?
(b) given that Sarawak Energy Berhad is currently supplying 90MW of electricity to Press Metal Berhad at such low price, which means Sarawak Energy Berhad is losing an approximate sum of RM78,840,000.00 (RM0.10 x 90,000 x 24 x 365) this year, how is Sarawak Energy Berhad going to finance the loss?
(c) How is Sarawak Energy Berhad going to finance the loss when it comes the time for Sarawak Energy Berhad to supply the full 600MW electricity at such low price whereby the loss to Sarawak Energy Berhad will be approximately RM525,600,000.00 per annum?
(d) Is the Government going to transfer such loss to the people of Sarawak by increasing the domestic, commercial and industrial tariff chargeable on the people?
6. To ask the Honourable Chief Minister to state:
(a) What is the proposed method of financing for the purchase of the Bakun Hydro Project by Sarawak?
(b) Taking into consideration the purchase price and the interest costs, what is the cost of production of electricity (per KwH) of the Bakun Dam?
(c) If the cost of production of electricity is cheaper than the current costs of production of Sarawak Energy Berhad, will the Government lower the electricity tariffs for domestic, commercial and industrial usage?
7. To ask the Honourable Chief Minister to state:
(a) what is the rationale of the Sarawak Energy Berhad in employing a foreign Chief Executive Officer at the annual salary of US$1.2 million together with 10 return trips to and fro Kuching Norway annually?
(b) How many foreigners has Sarawak Energy Berhad and /or its subsidiaries employed in the last two years? What are the amount and the breakdown of their respective salaries and allowances?
(c) How many more foreigners will Sarawak Energy Berhad and /or its subsidiaries employed in the next two years? What are the amount and the breakdown of their respective salaries and allowances?
(d) Are Sarawakians not capable enough for the posts taken by these foreigners that Sarawak Energy Berhad has to spent so much to employ these foreigners?
8. What is the monthly salary amount for Mayor of MBKS? The current Mayor? How many new vehicles did MBKS buy since the current Mayor took office?
With that I conclude my speech. Thank you.
Posted by Violet Yong at 9:23 AM