Tuesday, September 24

Contentious Global Witness video hotly debated at DCCI’s meet


KUCHING: The controversial Global Witness video on the alleged corruption involving land deals in Sarawak was hotly debated among Dayak Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) members during its annual general meeting yesterday.

In one of the resolutions passed at the meeting, DCCI stated that they took exception over the highly demeaning and racist views as well as deplorable actions as exposed in the video now circulated widely in the social media.

Among the contents of the video which are offensive were the labelling of the natives as squatters on state land, and the exploiting and manipulating of the natives as tools to circumvent the requirement of the law.

“We firmly believe that the natives have rights in our land. Our rights in land have been well entrenched in our laws, culture and customs which are duly recognised and accepted by our courts. These rights should be respected by all,” said a statement issued by DCCI secretary-general Libat Langub after the meeting.

He elaborated that while it was true the native communities are still lagging behind, but they as equal citizens of Malaysia should be respected and not be manipulated nor exploited by others.

“Indeed, the way forward is to ensure that all communities are provided with greater opportunities to meaningfully participate in all sectors of development, including in land development, to ensure that we can achieve the government’s objective of a higher income and an all inclusive economy.

“We hope, in that way, to progress and find our rightful place in ‘one’ Malaysia,” he said.

The meeting yesterday at a local hotel here was attended by some 100 members including those coming from Miri, Bintulu and Sibu. It was chaired by DCCI president Tan Sri Datuk Amar Leo Moggie, with advisor Tan Sri Datuk Amar Leonard Linggi and deputy president Dato Sri Celestine Ujang also in attendance.

Another resolution passed by DCCI was to request the federal government to take cognisance of the peculiar local ‘adat’ (customs), culture, conditions and circumstances in framing and implementing policies with regards to Sarawak.

It was learnt that DCCI members have expressed their concern over the policies which deprived them from participating.

“A case in point is in relation to ration cooked supplies catering tendered in rural schools where there are no Muslims, which require the participating companies not only to have halal certificate but be owned by Muslims,” said Libat in the statement.

DCCI currently has more than 500 members comprising entrepreneurs and professionals.

from the Dayak community.