SIBU: Sarawak BN is committed to protect the state’s land rights; hence, all federal projects involving land were vetted accordingly before approvals were given.
Citing the ‘Rumah Mesra’ scheme by Syarikat Perumahan Negara Berhad (SPNB) as an example, Assistant Minister for Housing Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said the project was slightly delayed because the state government objected to native land for affordable housing being charged to the Federal Land Commissioner.
“SPNB had to accept Sarawak’s proposal for the land status being maintained and not charged to a federal agency,” he told The Borneo Post yesterday in response to a statement by Pending assemblyman Violet Yong recently.
“This shows how committed Sarawak BN government is towards preserving state rights.”
Yong had called on the government to ensure the state’s land rights were not eroded by the 1Malaysia People’s Housing (PR1MA) programme.
She said PR1MA was a federal initiative, but it involved using state land.
In thanking Yong for her concern, Abdul Karim said in the case of PR1MA, approvals had to go through the State Planning Authority (SPA); therefore, there is no question of the state’s rights being infringed.
He added that the state government had also been asking for the return of state rights that might have been diminished by KL over the years.
“Negotiations are currently still ongoing, and these are reflections of how serious the state government are (on this issue).”
He reckoned Yong and her party, the DAP, might do otherwise.
“Their supreme leaders are all from West Malaysia.
“I am not sure whether Sarawak DAP leaders are serious when they say they are fighting for state rights. Their vehicle is already wrong."