IT is not necessary for a Native Land Tribunal to be set up for the time being, said Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman.

This is because the Land and Survey Department felt the existing Sabah Land Ordinance mechanism to determine Native Customary Rights (NCR) claims is still relevant and sufficient, he said.

“However as a responsible government we are always receptive to any proposal that can improve the present procedures,” said Musa while winding up on the motion of thanks to the Head of State’s government policy address at the State Legislative Assembly, Tuesday.

His speech was delivered by Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department Datuk Nasir Tun Sakaran.

Based on the Land and Survey Department’s record, so far 562 NCR claims had been registered from 1997 until 2010.

Of these cases, he said 192 cases had been verified but 40 were not and therefore rejected while another 328 cases are still under investigation.

Two cases were withdrawn.

On Sri Tanjung Assemblyman, Jimmy Wong’s proposal for the Sabah Land Ordinance to be amended, he said ownership of land through NCR claim was among six methods used by the State Government to award land to the people.

An individual claiming NCR on the land needs to submit the claim in written form to the Land Revenue Collector where the State land is situated, he said, adding the claim would then be processed under Section 13 to 16 with evidence and witness provided by the claimant.

The claimant is free to appoint a lawyer to represent him or her and produce whatever proof as well as witness to support the claim.

In making the decision after the proceeding, the Land Revenue Collector would take into consideration Sections 5, 6, 65 and 88 of the Sabah Land Ordinance and the decision can be appealed to the Director of Land and Surveys within 30 days as stipulated under Section 41 of the same ordinance.

The director’s decision could also be appealed to the High Court, Court of Appeal and Federal Court.

On the query by Kuamut Assemblyman, Masiung Banah, he said the objection from the kampung folk was only received four years after the land title was issued.

The land awarded to Syarikat Corak Nahkoda Sdn Bhd and Syarikat Hap Seng Consolidated Berhad (not Syarikat Asiatic) was within the Tongod Regional Planning Study Area (TRPSA).

Hap Seng had applied for 25,000 acres for agriculture purpose in the TRPSA, which was processed according to the land application procedure with the notice under Section 13 of the Sabah Land Ordinance exhibited for one month at the notice board and copies given to the JKKK chairman and village head.

There was no objection received within the one month period.

The application was discussed in the District Land Utilisation Committee on Oct 9, 1997 and the decision was forwarded to the Land and Surveys Department for consideration.

The application was endorsed by the Natural Resource Secretary on Oct 31, 1997 and approved on Dec 22, 1998.

During the surveying of the area, 3,000 acres were alienated and 1,500 acres involved three villages (Kuala Menanam, Sinua and Liu Pampang).

Since the matters had been resolved the survey map had been approved and the land title CL. 255330726 belonging to Hap Seng Consolidated Berhad was registered on Sept 6, 1999.

Among the conditions set in the land title was a 30 per cent native equity.

As for Corak Nahkoda Sdn Bhd, he said its application for 20,000 acres was also processed based on the existing procedures, which was approved on Nov 3, 1997.

The land title issued was for 18,061 acres and later Corak Nahkoda conducted a re-survey for subdivisions to 26 lots and in the process alienated 790 acres for kampung use. However, the villagers are still claiming for NCR in court.

On the issue raised by several backbenchers on the NCR claim in Tinompok Forest Reserve, he said there was no provision in the 1968 Forestry Enactment that allows NCR claims in a forest reserve.

via Native Land Tribunal not necessary for now, says CM | Daily Express Newspaper Online, Sabah, Malaysia..

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