Stay calm, be patient as govt finds a holistic solution to Pemakai Menoa, Pulau Galau issue

Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas

KUCHING:  The Dayak community have been urged to stay calm and be patient as the special committee formed to look into the Pemakai Menoa and Pulau Galau issue is working tirelessly to find a holistic solution to solve the problem as mandated by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.

In stating this, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said in fact, the chief minister had previously made statements stressing unequivocally that the government recognises Pemakai Menoa and Pulau Galau at various functions which had been widely reported by newspapers.

“We have been working on it. Not only that, we also conducted consultations, we called a group in Kuching, we met another group in Bintulu. We also received recommendations from Sarawak Dayak Iban Association (Sadia) and other non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

“We received all the feedback, whatever feedback given to us. State PKR chairman Baru Bian also met me few weeks ago and informed me that he wanted to submit a proposal on the definition (of Pulau Galau and Pemakai Menoa). In fact, he was also invited to attend the discussion among a group of lawyers in Bintulu chaired by Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom as part of our consultation,” Uggah said.

According to Uggah, the Majlis Adat Istiadat Sarawak is also in talks with the community leaders to find out the best definition to resolve the problem without rushing through it.

On Baru’s motion, Uggah said the state Barisan Nasional elected representatives rejected the motion because the proposal was incomplete.

“The proposal was not holistic and it was not that we didn’t want to help the Dayak community,” he said.

In stressing that the state government is sympathetic of the natives who are facing this problem, Uggah said whoever accused the government of betraying the people have to understand the works of the government.

“A government is different from an NGO or public individual who can just pronounce something and later on not honouring it. CM has pronounced it. We are committed to do it and we must do it properly. Worst of all later on if there is any issue coming up, we got to amend our Land Code again. ”

On whether the issue will affect Barisan Nasional’s performance in 14th General Election, Uggah said the majority of the native community support the government because they have seen what the government has done especially in bringing development.

“They are confident of what we will do in the future. I think on the same basis, I am confident that we will get their support. Especially with a new Chief Minister, with new vision on digital economy and lot of his programme are to fight for Sarawak rights and other bigger issues. To me, I am very confident the people will support us,” he said.

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