NCR land victory for Nor Anak Nyawai

By Joseph Tawie, Free Malaysia Today

KUCHING: Native customary land owners Nor anak Nyawai and three others yesterday won another round of victory against Tatau Land Sdn Bhd, Superintendent of Lands and Surveys, Bintulu and the state government of Sarawak, when the Kuching High Court allowed their application for an injunction until the disposal of the case.

The disputed land is described at Lots 15 and 16, Block 3 Sangan District respectively in Tatau, Bintulu.

The plaintiffs, represented by Baru Bian, are asking for various reliefs including a declaration that the issuance of provisional leases is null and void.

Additionally, they are also seeking a prohibitory injunction restraining the first defendant, Tatau Land Sdn Bhd, its servants and agents from entering, clearing and occupying the land over which they (the plaintiffs) claim native customary rights.

The plaintiffs’ application is for an interlocutory order in relation to the prohibitory injunction which is one of the reliefs the plaintiffs are asking for in the action.

In their affidavit to support their application, the plaintiffs said that their ancestors have for many generations past, until now continued to occupy, cultivate and use the land they are claiming to be entitled to under native laws and custom.

They said that they were neither aware of nor consented to the issuance of the provisional leases to the first defendant, Tatau Land Sdn Bhd which constituted the termination of their native customary rights over land covered under the provisional leases.

Towards the end of November 2010, the servants of the first defendant and the second defendant, the superintendent of lands and surveys, demolished 25 houses within Lot 16 and unless restrained 30 more houses belonging to the plaintiffs would also be demolished and at the same time the physical evidence constituting proof of the plaintiffs’ claim to native customary rights at the trial of the action would be destroyed.

The first defendant resisted the application for interlocutory injunction. The first defendant, by an affidavit filed on its behalf, admitted to being the registered proprietor of the 650 hectares of land under Lot 16 which was alienated on Dec 23, 2002 and to be developed into a new township called Samarakan.