Kg Buah Pala: State to file application to invoke Section 116 on Tuesday

By Tan Sin Chow & Ann Tan, The Star

The state government will file an application at the High Court Tuesday to invoke Section 116 (1)(d) of the National Land Code to prevent the demolition of houses in Kampung Buah Pala.

Seri Delima assemblyman R. S. N. Rayer said they had initially wanted to file in the application Monday but North-east district officer Azizi Zakaria had yet to sign the documents.

“We can only file them once Azizi signs the documents. I have been in the High Court until 4.30pm so we’ll have to wait until tomorrow to file it,” he said when met at the High Court Tuesday.

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng’s political secretary Ng Wei Aik said the state had appointed Bukit Gelugor MP Karpal Singh and Rayer to file the application.

Ng, who visited Kampung Buah Pala in the morning, said the state government was standing by the villagers.

“Although time is running out, we will our try our best to deal with the landowner Koperasi Pegawai Kerajaan Pulau Pinang Bhd and developer Nusmetro Ventures (P) Sdn Bhd.

At a press conference, Lim said those wanting to buy the land must pay the market price which was more than RM100mil.

“The state’s annual budget is only RM477mil. I cannot sacrifice the interests of 1.5mil Penangites by allocating almost a quarter of the budget to save the home of 23 families,” he said.

Village Residents Association chairman M. Sugumaran said they were living in fear of bulldozers coming in at anytime to flatten their houses.

He said the demolition would not have become an issue if Lim had exercised his authority when he took over the state administration on March 8 last year.

“We told him about our problem on March 13 before the land premium was paid up a day later and the land title was issued on March 27.

“He could have done something at that time,” he said.