Hornbill Unleashed

October 24, 2010

200 NCR landowners demand to be detained

By Joseph Tawie

More than 200 owners of native customary rights (NCR) land gathered outside the gate of the Simunjan police station here demanding to be detained together with seven of their colleagues who were being held for alleged mischief with fire yesterday.

Fearful of more owners turning up, police quickly closed the gate to prevent them from entering and called for more reinforcement.

The landowners were supporters of well-known activist Nicholas Mujah and four Tuai Rumah (longhouse chiefs) and two others.

Their arrests have caught the attention of international media like BBC which phoned Mujah’s supporters for details of the detention.

Besides being the secretary-general of Sarawak Dayak Iban Association (Sadia), Mujah is also a member of several national and international non-governmental organisations.

Mujah and two others were detained yesterday afternoon after their statements were taken and their lawyer See Chee How of Baru Bian’s legal firm was present. They will be produced in court today for further remand.

On Thursday, three longhouse chiefs and a NCR landowner were detained. They were produced in court yesterday and remanded for four days.

Besides Mujah, the others detained are his brother Tuai Rumah Sadon Ak Asson, Tuai Rumah Philip Anak Bakat, Tuai Rumah Neli Anak Nipa, Tuai Rumah Bawi, Numpang Anak Suntai, and Tinsi Anak Bunda.

Police also took statements of 10 others from six longhouses, but they were not detained.

The seven have been arrested in connection with the fire that occurred last Monday destroying or damaging two-storey quarters, a store, six tractors, two logging trucks, a pick-up and an excavator.

The machinery and quarters belonged to the Royal Billion Sdn Bhd, a contractor of the licence holder Quality Concrete Holdings.

The amount of loss is yet to be estimated. But the company claimed the loss is at RM2 million.

Chief Minister Taib Mahmud’s sister Raziah is a non-executive director of the company.

Illegal logging

The logging company, Quality Concrete Holdings, has been in the centre of dispute after the Forestry Department gave it a licence to carry out logging activities in the disputed 3,305 hectares of forests which the Ibans from six longhouses claim to be their NCR land.

The landowners have been negotiating with the company and the authorities and they have also brought their complaints to the police, the district officer, the Resident of Samarahan Division and the Land and Survey Department. All to no avail.

When all these failed, the natives have, since Oct 14, erected a blockade to stop the workers from the Royal Billion Company from encroaching into their NCR land.

They have also stopped a “tongkang” (barge) from loading timber that has been extracted from the disputed area.

Mujah, a landowner himself, said he was curious why the police detained him.

“When the fire occurred, I was at Pulau Bruit with a colleague doing some monitoring work.  Furthermore, his last visit to his longhouse was on July 24.

“It is therefore ridiculous for the police to detain me,” he said.

On the so-called loss of RM2 million by the company, Mujah said that was only minimal.

“But the profits they extracted from the timber are worth hundreds of millions of ringgit. What about the destruction to our lands, the fruit trees, our gardens and cash crops and the damage to the ecological system?

“The company did not respect the law and the rights of the natives. It did not observe the conditions given to them in the licence. One of the conditions is that the company should leave NCR land alone.

“But this company disobeyed the conditions and it should be punished for that,” he said, accusing the Forestry Department of colluding with the company.

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22 Comments »

  1. […] 200 NCR landowners demand to be detained […]

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  8. […] 200 NCR landowners demand to be detained […]

    Pingback by NCR Defender to be charged in Court tomorrow « Hornbill Unleashed — December 14, 2010 @ 1:39 PM | Reply

  9. […] 200 NCR landowners demand to be detained […]

    Pingback by Breaking News : Simunjan 7 NCR landowners freed! « Hornbill Unleashed — October 25, 2010 @ 3:59 PM | Reply

  10. MORE INFORMATIOM ON NCR LEADERS-
    NUMPANG DETAINED BY POLICE- HE HAS HEART CONDITION

    LETTER FROM HIS SISTER CHRISTINA

    Christina S. Suntai says:
    October 23, 2010 at 2:31 pm
    (Reposted from Sarawak Report)

    “You are right Peter, just bunch of cowards making a living as YBs but no real concern for the people.

    We cannot totally blame the Forestry Department because this Department did in fact write a letter to Quality Concrete Holdings on August 13th 2010 to stop. Quality Concrete Holdings refused to stop because the rules of law do not apply to them. They knew they would not be arrested by the Police. When my brother Numpang heard about it, he called the Police in Sebuyau and they Police in Sebuyau told him there was nothing they can do. Numpang then called the Police in Kota Samarahan to complain that Quality Concrete Holdings did not stop taking logs out of our NCR forest, Police in Kota Samarahan told him the same thing, “There is nothing we can do.” Then Numpang proceeded to call the Police in Putra Jaya and again he was told that there was nothing they can do to stop the illegal logging activities.

    Then on October 15th the logging camp was burnt and the Police in Simunjan acted very quickly. The first thing they did was visiting my father’s “Tempat Jual Minyak” at Sebangan and asked my 97 year old father where Numpang was. My father asked the Police, “Why are you looking for Numpang?” and the Policeman responded, “We want to “tangkap” (arrest)him.” My father then responded, “Why do want to arrest my son. Did he do anything wrong?” and at that point the policeman left and muttered to my father saying, “Pura pura tidak tahu.” Numpang was in Kuching seeking medical treatment for a very bad cold and getting his heart medication and was not at my father’s shack at that time.

    On October 22nd Malaysian Mirror, a local news media, “Timber Camp burnt destroyed by Protester.” I was shock! Just a few hour ago I was talking to my brother and he did not hear of the fire until Joseph Tawie from Free Malaysia Today called him and told him about it.

    The point that I am going to make is first, the Police reacted very quickly wanting to arrest my brother. Yet “Nothing we can do” response to Numpang when he called them about Quality Concrete Holdings trespassing on Native land and stealing trees from our forest.

    Second point I am going to make here, why did Malaysian Mirror make such a blatant headline and already condemning the protestor by saying “Timber Camp burnt destroyed by protester.” People are innocent until proven guilty. Nice attention grabbing headline at the expense of the Ibans in Sebangan and I am very upset about it! I am protesting against Malaysian Mirror condemnation of the my relative who stood up and protested against illegal loggers. Please, we Ibans are not “bodoh” you know, enough already!”

    Comment by Abang — October 24, 2010 @ 5:27 PM | Reply

  11. It is a great idea!

    1. Organise a hundred thousand men and women to make a peaceful march on the Kuching DUN.

    2. Organise a big drum beat through out the country as suggested by Abang!

    Comment by Anotherheadhunter — October 24, 2010 @ 4:59 PM | Reply

    • Yes…we the Dayaks are the majority in Sarawak…so going to stop us? The dayaks in the army…police..? Let them catch us and will get back to them and treat them as traitors to their own people.

      Get started somewhere and I am sure people will joining in….if the dayaks especially the Iban doesnt rise up now…..YOU WILL FOREVER BE UNDER THE GRIP OF THE WHITE TERMITES AND HIS CRONIES.

      March in thousand to JABU resident and demand him to take action now…. if notjust crash into his resident…we all know his son Jerald holding shars in few timber companies operatingin Sarawak.

      YES…MARCH HUNDRED THOUSAND MEN AND WOMEN TO THE DUN….. AND INVITES INTERNATIONAL PRESS AS WELL….

      Comment by Head Hunters — October 24, 2010 @ 9:56 PM | Reply

  12. 200 ONLY? WHAT HAPPEN TO THE OTHER IBAN???? IS THIS THE BEST THEY CAN DO…..THE WHOLE SARAWAK IBAN SHOULD MARCH TO CM OFFICE….IF NOT TO HIS RESIDENT…..JUST CRUSH THE GATE AND SHE HOW THE TREAT TRESPASSER….

    MARCH IN THOUSAND… SO CREATE A TSUNAMI. THSI IS THE TIME WE ALL SARAWAKIAN CAN COME TOGETHER AND CHASE OUT THE UMNO/BN OUT OF OUR STATE…. MERDEKA SARAWAK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Comment by Head Hunting Time — October 24, 2010 @ 11:35 AM | Reply

  13. It is time for the Dayaks to gather in the hundred of thousands to show the BN government that they no longer allow themselves to be pawns for voting BN in exchange for developments and recognition of their NCR lands rights. I also urge all BN appointed community leaders to resign and return the appointment back to BN government to rally their supports for the Dayak community at large. Demand for justice and respect for the community. Fight for change now and fly Pakatan flags in every nooks and corners of Sarawak..Change We Must and its Now.

    Comment by Mata Kuching — October 24, 2010 @ 11:23 AM | Reply

  14. i strongly suggest make a connection with outside media..such a BBC,twiter,facebook etc…it was proved work recently during Iran crisis..let the world know and with international pressure hopefully we can have tactical advantage..

    Comment by leo panetta — October 24, 2010 @ 11:14 AM | Reply

  15. I agree entirely with abang. If international support is necessary in a just cause, and it is, then these kinds of creative and theatrical demonstrations of will, like mass arrest protests and the beating of drums are great publicity. A clear statement of will and intent. Abang is right to turn to the Latin American democracy and social movements for inspiration, throughout that continent they have led the way in theatre as protest, protest as theatre.

    Comment by Adam Response — October 24, 2010 @ 9:48 AM | Reply

  16. Are the Dayaks slowing but surely waking up at last? Will they still support the BN for a few packets of Maggi mee but continue to lose their valuable land worth millions to the Thief Minister and his timber robbers? As I said before, the opposition should translate all the Sarawak Report articles and distribute them to all the longhouses. The BN will do all it can to keep the rural folks ignorant so that they can control them. The opposition should also promise all longhouses folks freedom to elect their own Tuai Rumah and also to increase their monthly allowance if elected. The key to winning the state election are the rural population and Taib’s knows that. Bomoh or not, his days are numbered. Hopefully the day will come when he is put behind bars for his crime.

    Comment by fcukbn — October 24, 2010 @ 9:15 AM | Reply

  17. honestly,i never seen anything like this. no ordinary minds would do such a thing: came all the way from home asking to be detained in jail, just to see fellow brothers.

    but i guess this is because the bond between brothers is sooo strong. A brother will not leave another brother, right?

    Comment by qwerty — October 24, 2010 @ 8:54 AM | Reply

    • WHAT IS UNUSAL OR SURPRISING ABOUT THAT!? WON’T YOU FIGHT FOR YOUR OWN BROTHERS & SISTERS?

      IF YOU DON’T STAND UP AND FIGHT BACK YOU WILL HAVE NOTHING LEFT YOU CAN CALL YOUR OWN IN THE END.

      EVERYTHING IS BEING GRABBED BY YOU KNOW WHO!

      IT IT A GREAT SIGN OF UNITY WITH OUR LEADERS WHO LOST THEIR FREEDOM IN DEFENDING YOUR RIGHTS!

      IF ALL THE PEOPLES OF SARAWAK BOND AS THE 200 NCR PEOPLE HAVE DONE IT WILL BE NO PROBLEM TO GET RID OF THEIR OPPRESSORS!

      Comment by Abang — October 24, 2010 @ 10:00 AM | Reply

    • It does sound kind of silly, but we have a systems failure.

      And in such a mess, the opposite is true. No one is above the Law, supposedly.

      Our politicians are are way above of the Law – a system failure!

      So why would anybody in his right mind dump billions in Malaysia? When they can’t be sure their assets would be protected BY the same LAW???

      What sounds silly is – when these guys are SHAMED they then can pretend to play the game.

      We have some serious work to do to overhaul our education system and general society as a whole but it’s gaining by bits and like it or not, the incredibly slow pace, but it’s coming!

      In the ongoing UMNO General Assembly, that shithead Muhyiddin has declared history to be a compulsory subject to pass!!! What kind of HISTORY does he want our kids to compulsorily learn by rote???

      Comment by Wayang Kulit — October 24, 2010 @ 10:42 AM | Reply

  18. MASS ACTION- IDEAS TO CONSIDER…

    1. MASS ARREST
    The 200 NCR landowners in presenting themselves to be arrested at Simunjang Police Stn is a mass action in support of their leaders. Just imagine if thousands of us gather there demanding the same! This will certainly highlight the land rights struggle in an effective way. It is a commitment one has to make in considering this option.

    Other mass actions could also be taken:

    2. BEATING DRUMS.
    This is a protest technique used in Argentina. Wikipedia calls this a “cacerolazo or cacerolada” – a form of popular protest practised in certain Spanish-speaking countries – in particular Argentina – which consists in a group of people creating noise by banging pots, pans, and other utensils in order to call for attention. What is peculiar about this type of demonstration is that the people protest from their own homes, thus achieving a high level of support and participation.

    In Sarawak we can beat our drums. Dayaks, Malays and Chinese all have drums.

    It has been suggested that the beating of drums is a way to show our support of the land rights struggle and in protest against the UMNO PBB BN corrupt government. The purpose must be first explained to the general population so as not to alarm them. When they understand the purpose they will be less disturbed about the drumming and may even join in.

    Over a period of time the drum beats will create a psychological impact on the government, police and timber logging companies…as they know the people are speaking with one voice and one mind. On the other hand the people’s spirit and encourage in opposing the regime will be boosted as they know why they are doing the drumming.

    It could ALSO be done for the elections to signify that the end of the UMNO PBB BN regime is drawing near. May be start now until they are thrown out of power. And on the anniversary of this happy day we could roll the drums every year to celebrate our victory!

    This is a peaceful way of making a protest known. Everyone with a drum could do it and the police cannot arrest everyone for peacefully playing with their drums. If no drums use pots and pans!

    In the Sebangan areas the people could start a series of drumming as a protest against the logging. This could be done on a set time basis say morning, noon and evening. People should first be informed of the purpose of drumming- that is to rallying support the land right struggle and to oppose the UMNO PBB BN corruption. People in other ares could join in support…

    Taking this idea further- this could be organised on statewide scale from neighbourhood to neighbourhood and then linking up with drumming in Sabah.

    Say drumming to start from one of end of Sarawak to the further part of Sabah. The whole land will resound with drum beats. Our protest will be very unique and easy to carry out.

    The drum beats could be recorded and amplified on loud speakers. Many of us would have the gear to do it.

    LET US BEAT OUR DRUMS UNISON IN DEFENCE OF OUR LAND!

    DRUM UMNO PBB BN OUT OF POWER!!!

    Comment by Abang — October 24, 2010 @ 8:17 AM | Reply

    • Great idea! Promote this idea to all sarawakian. time to take back our beloved sarawak. call international press to help. quick! pass the news around and rally the people to battle. Sarawak for sarawakian!

      Comment by OneSarawak — October 27, 2010 @ 2:05 PM | Reply


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