Thursday, June 4

‘Amendment to Land Code won’t reduce size of NCR land’

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SIBU: Amendment to Sarawak Land Code Ordinance and creation of Section 6A for Native Territorial Domain (NTD) will not reduce the size of native customary rights (NCR) land under Section 5 of the ordinance.

In giving this assurance, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said in fact NTD is over and above NCR land.

“Not an inch of NCR is reduced with the amendment and creation of Section 6A. This means an increase in the size of NCR land.

“This is one of the land reforms that we made,” he said in his welcoming speech at the Sarawak Land Amendment Bill Forum here yesterday.

The forum, attended by more than 1,000 people from Kapit, Mukah, Sarikei and Sibu divisions, was officiated by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.

Uggah, who is also the forum advisor, said the amendment changed the fate of NTD.

Earlier, he said there were misunderstandings on the amendment, especially by the opposition who alleged the amendment would reduce NCR land size to 1,000 hectares.

“It is a lie. They do not understand the law.

“In fact, NCR land in the state is recognised under Section 5 of the ordinance which includes ‘temuda’ (occupied land), ‘tembawai’ (former longhouse site), ‘pendam’ (burial site), ‘tanah buah’ (fruit orchard), ‘tanah rumah’ (longhouse site), all these are NCR land,” he said.

He also disclosed that there are at least 1.5 million ha of NCR land in the state, of which a total of 900,000 ha had been surveyed while 800,000 ha had been gazetted.

Also present were State Legislative Assembly Speaker Datuk Amar Mohamad Asfia Awang Nassar, State Secretary Datu Jaul Samion and Minister of Welfare and Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Dato Sri Fatimah Abdullah.