Hornbill Unleashed

January 25, 2013

‘Arrest of NCR activists illegal’

Joseph Tawie

An native customary rights lawyer in Sarawak has accused the Selangau police and a Sarawak Administrative Officer of abusing their power in remanding two siblings.

Two native customary rights (NCR) land activists, were not only arrested for lodging a report against a company for illegally logging on their NCR land but also denied proper court procedures.

Matek anak Geram, aged 40, and his brother Tambi, 60, who are members of Sarawak Dayak Iban Association (Sadia) were arrested last Sunday, and on Monday they were produced before a Sarawak Administrative Officer (SAO) who sat in as a magistrate.

Free MatakThe magistrate remanded them for seven days. When they appeared before the same magistrate again on Wednesday on another charge of criminal intimidation, the magistrate ordered a bail of RM3,000 each.

According to their lawyer, See Chee How, the whole process was “illegal” and both the police and the SAO of Mukah had abused their authority.

“The Police and SAO clearly abused their authority when they remanded them for seven days. This is clearly illegal,” said See, who is also Batu Lintang assemblyman.

Police report
Recounting the events today, See said that last Saturday the two brothers of Rumah Segudan, Kuala Balingian had stumbled across some logging activities on their NCR land. Upon investigation, they discovered that the  company had no permit to log trees.

The brothers then asked the loggers to stop their activities on the NCR land.

“When the loggers refused, Matek and his brother took a bundle of their machinery keys and handed them to the Selangau police. They also lodged a report at the police station.

“(But) on Sunday, the loggers went to the police station, took the keys and continued their logging activities despite protest from the longhouse folk.

“The longhouse folk demanded that the company pay them ‘penti pemali’ as compensation for disturbing peace or cease their activities.

“The loggers (instead) called the police who arrested the Matek and Tambi,” said See who is also Sarawak PKR vice chairman.



  1. Maybe the Police and SAO were broibed by teh company!!!????

    Comment by al — January 26, 2013 @ 4:05 PM | Reply

  2. All NCR owners and and Dayaks must arise. Do not let BN bully us and make us bow and be grateful to them like master and slaves.

    Comment by Anthony Lisau — January 25, 2013 @ 7:29 PM | Reply

  3. This is just a repeat of many more such incidents is Sarawak where the law is abused by theives and robbers with the help of those entrusted to uphold the law. Theives and Robbers weld more powers then those who are supposed to protect us from these Theives and Robbers but instead we natives often times fall victims to this vicious circle being played out in our junggles by these theives and robbers with the help of the enforcers of the Law.

    Where is the sustainable forest management which was supposed to prevent these kind of theiving and robbing, to avoid intimidations and conflicts with the natives? If there was really such a thing as sustainable forest management, these theives and robbers would not be stealing longhouse woods if they are hungry. These theives and robbers would be having a ball chopping timbers in timber plantations own by samling,shin yang,rimbunan hijau,ta ann, wtk,kts and all those who were generously made rich by the grace of awang tanah’s beloved taib. And probably, those who are suppose to uphold the law will not be tempted and less susceptible to be abused and induced by theives and roobers to break the LAW.

    Comment by brian — January 25, 2013 @ 5:06 PM | Reply

  4. Why dont sue the Police and SAO???

    Comment by al — January 25, 2013 @ 4:47 PM | Reply

  5. Nelson Janting’s commented in Free Malaysia Today – born a “saloi” re-incarnated as a “10Xpaloi”, on two SADIA members (brothers Matek and Tambi) is tasteless to say the least. Encik Nelson, where are you from and what ethnic group do you belong to? Definitely not an Iban!

    Comment by Edward, M — January 25, 2013 @ 1:46 PM | Reply

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