Hornbill Unleashed

June 8, 2017

Dayak NGO urges AG’s Chamber to investigate Bill Kayong judgement

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:02 AM

Image result for Bill KayongThe Dayak National Congress (DNC) has urged the Attorney-General’s Chamber to carry out an investigation concerning the discharge and acquittal of three men who were charged with abetting in the murder of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) Miri secretary Bill Kayong on June 21, 2016.

Its president Paul Raja said the non-governmental organisation (NGO) is querying whether the investigation and prosecution were carried out properly within reasonable standards.

“In the words of a senior criminal lawyer, it is a case where the investigation and prosecution was designed to an inescapable conclusion,” he said in a statement yesterday.

Paul noted that as an important case which has attracted worldwide attention, the country’s judicial system was now in a mess.

“As has been said many times over and is public knowledge, the mastermind ran away from the murder and is linked to the series of altercations related to the Bekelit land dispute. Yesterday’s (Tuesday) judgment of the court is totally unbelievable,” he exclaimed.

He opined that ‘this type of likely judgment has always been at the back of the people’s minds and has now become a reality’ and that justice also cannot be attained in the courtroom.

“Where else can the native landowners whose lands have been wrongly grabbed away from them go for justice? Will not this type of judgment encourage more plantation companies to employ thugs to settle their disputes with the native landowners —just like what happened recently involving the natives in Sungai Arip, Tatau?” he questioned.

Paul said this case served as a reminder to the government to respond accordingly and rectify the situation.

“The government cannot remain quiet in this type of situation. All land problems pertaining to Native Customary Rights (NCR) must be resolved. The law must recognise NCR land as it is. It cannot be a half-measure or makeshift solution,” he remarked, adding that ‘pemakai menoa’ and ‘pulau galau’ as customs must be recognised.

Any solution short of that, he said, will invite more trouble instead of solving the issue.

“In fact the government’s conduct in issuing provisional leases and licences to plant forests over ‘pemakai menoa’ and ‘pulau galau’ are clear acts of breaching native customary rights of the natives.

“The only solution to the problem is for the government to stop the practice and return back all the lands to the natives. Any future development intending to use NCR land must be with the consent of the native landowners,” he added.

The three men—Datuk Stephen Lee Chee Kiang, Chin Wui Ching and Lie Chang Loon—were discharged and acquitted on Tuesday (June 6) following High Court Judge Ravinthran N Paramaguru’s judgement that the prosecution had failed to establish a prima facie case.

“There is no evidence to link all three with the murder case. The only reference to Lee with the murder case was he was arrested in Kuala Lumpur in December last year, and earlier allegedly involved in disputes.

“Similarly, there is also no evidence to link Chin and Lie with the murder case except they were required to give specimens for a chemistry report for DNA samples, which also showed no evidence to the case. Thus they were discharged and acquitted for there is insufficient evidence,” he told a packed courtroom in Miri.

The late Bill, who was also known as Mohd Hasbie Abdullah, was shot at a traffic light intersection in Tudan, Miri-Kuala Baram bypass.

Lee, a businessman and allegedly the mastermind behind the murder, was handed over to Malaysian authorities after he was caught by China’s Ministry of Public Security in Putiian Fujian Province on Dec 12. He was deported under the escort of a special task force led personally by state CID chief Datuk Dev Kumar.

Lie is a pub owner while Chin is a personal assistant to Lee.

Source : The Borneo Post Online


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