A former Bukit Raja estate worker claims that the Subang MP Sivarasa's explanation over the land issue is an an attempt to divert attention.
P Mathiakalan accused the PKR leader of diverting from the real issue, which was the size of the land allocated to the ex-estate workers.
“He is talking nonsense, his statement is inaccurate. Why he is raising about the house value? It is not relevant at all,” he said.
“It is utter rubbish. First they said the 15 acres do not exist. When we showed solid evidence now they diverted the issue from the land to the house value. So who is the liar?” he asked.
Mathiakalan also said the former Bukit Raja estate workers were not squatters but plantation workers and therefore deserved landed properties.
Yesterday, Mathiakalan had accused Sivarasa and Selangor exco Dr Xavier Jayakumar of cheating the former estate workers of their land.
However, Sivarasa later claimed that the issue was not about whether plantation giant Sime Darby had issued 15 acres of land.
“The issue of the 15 acres of land does not arise and in fact, never did,” he said, adding that the allegation was raised by a small group of ex-workers for “reasons known only to them”.
Sivarasa also stated that the workers knew clearly in 2009 what they were being offered when inking the sales and purchase agreement, which was explained via a letter in Tamil.
However, Mathiakalan said: “Our concern is very simple. The land was given to us. So, give back our land (the 15 acres).”
He also criticised Sivarasa for claiming that only a small group of ex-workers raised the issue.
“It is not true at all. All the ex-plantation workers are keen to know about the status of the land,” he said, adding that he would arrange for them to meet the press soon.
Asked about the sales and purchase agreement, Mathialakan admitted that he signed the document in 2009.
“We were told to sign the document in order to get bank loans,” he said, adding that the agreement expired in 2011.
He added that the developer Sanu Murni Sdn Bhd failed to meet the 2011 deadline to complete the construction of the houses.
Mathialakan also dismissed the claim that the ex-plantation workers were being backed by Barisan Nasional leaders to run down their political rivals.
“Since 1988 we have not been aligned to any political party. That is the reason we hired Sivarasa as our lawyer,” he said.
“We are just poor plantation workers battling for our rights,” he added.
Mathiakalan also called on the National Indian Advancement Team (NIAT) and the Return Effingham Land Action Team (REFlax) to help the ex-workers get back the land.