Twenty Penans from Suai have denied oil palm contractor Harry Ma’s recent claim that several Penans had intruded into the plantation on Dec 19 morning.
The Penans went to the Miri Central Police Station (CPS) at about 12.30pm yesterday to have their statements taken.
“The alleged incident (on the intrusion) that was published by The Borneo Post on Dec 22 runs contrary to what had actually happened,” said the group spokesperson Clement Olo, when met at the CPS.
He said no Penans did what Ma had claimed on that particular day.
In the article, Ma said an unknown number of Penans, some of them carrying firearms, entered the plantation in 15 four-wheel drive vehicles (4WDs) at about 11am and took away all foodstuff in the canteen and five liquefied natural gas (LNG) cylinders.
Meanwhile, in an immediate response to The Borneo Post’s article, police said they were conducting an internal inquiry on Ma’s claim that his attempts to lodge a police report at Batu Niah police station on the intrusion of the Penans were not accepted.
Miri police chief ACP Khoo Leng Huat, in a press statement on Dec 22, confirmed that on Dec 20 at 2.40pm, a police report was lodged by Miri Anak Jamak, 48, (Harry Ma’s stepfather) at Batu Niah after several of his items were stolen. The stolen items were a handphone, his wallet-containing his Mykad, other personal documents, RM700 and tools valued at RM4,000.
However, Miri did not mention about the intrusion at Tanjung Tiara oil palm plantation.
On Dec 20, when the police interviewed him, he said he did not witness the alleged intrusion, said Khoo.
However, Miri claimed Arfan Malek, 41, a supervisor of the plantation did witness the intrusion on Dec 19 at 10am.
Then on Dec 21, Arfan lodged a police report at Batu Niah police station, claiming that on Dec 19 at 10am, when he was at the oil palm plantation (Suai, Niah), he encountered five 4WDs and that a driver told him they were Penans from Suai.
“Not long after that, eight other 4WDs came and they hurled firecrackers at Arfan before fleeing the scene with several of the workers’ belongings,” Khoo said.
Several motorcycles and a lorry were also damaged at the scene.
Khoo said the case was being investigated under Section 506, 448 and 427 of the Penal Code.
Source : @ The Borneo Post Online