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Ranau villagers lose millions

 | October 2, 2014

Villagers chased out by 100 illegals engaged by a company claiming their NCR land stand to suffer millions in lost earnings.

sabah povertyRANAU: Several thousand people in three villages in Ranau who were chased out last week by over 100 illegals engaged by a company claiming their NCR land, stand to suffer millions in lost earnings. The company had their crops destroyed as well.

“Each family earns up to RM7,000 a month from rubber alone,” said Sepakat Satu Perjuangan Ranau (SSPR) chairperson Jalibin Paidi in a statement.

“They buy medicine, raise their families and spend on their children’s education with this income.”

He was commenting on the destruction of rubber trees, fruit trees, padi plants, oil palm trees and cash crops in Malinsau, Wayan and Sinurai, three kampungs collectively known as Mawasi.

Jalibin claimed that, in recent times, the villagers have even been able to send their children for tertiary studies with just their income from the land.

“What will happen to the residents of Mawasi now that they have been deprived of their sources of income?” he asked. “Also destroyed were watershed areas and water supply sources.”

The situation could have been even worse if the company’s efforts to cut down more rubber trees on their NCR land had not been successfully prevented by the villagers forming human barricades, added Jalibin.

He accused the elected representatives in the area of failing to protect the Orang Asal and their NCR land from falling into the clutches of predatory companies who can afford to employ an army of lawyers to navigate their way through the system.

The company concerned claims the Sabah government has alienated the NCR land to it. It then obtained a court order to enforce its newly-obtained ownership rights.


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