30 May 2016
MACC has never received any corruption report against Orang Asli
The Perak branch of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) has never received any report on corrupt practices among the Orang Asli, said its deputy director Mohamad Hassan.
This was probably because the Orang Asli community had never been involved in corruption or they were aware about the white-collar crime but did not know the proper channels to lodge a report.
“We have not received any complaint from the Orang Asli community over the issue (corruption). I believe they are aware of the corruption practice going around them but do not know how to report it,” Mohamad said.
He said this during a ‘Hatimu Hatiku Jua’ dialogue with the Orang Asli community in conjunction with a programme to popularise MACC and the Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4) at Kampung Orang Asli Desa Permai in Banun Resettlement Scheme in Grik, Perak, yesterday.
The one-day programme, which was jointly organised by the MACC, the Department of Orang Asli Development (JAKOA), C4 and the Public Complaints Bureau, was attended by more than 100 people comprising Orang Asli leaders nationwide.
21 November 2015
22 October 2015
WHEN A PROMISE BECOMES A THREAT!
Jakoa slammed for ‘threat’ to retract compensation
DAP leader Sheikh Omar Ali has slammed the Orang Asli Development Department (Jakoa) for threatening to retract compensation to the orang asli community in Kluang whose homes are being demolished.
Jakoa on Oct 21 promised to provide compensation to residents at Kampung Abdul Rahman Yassin in Johor for agreeing to relocate to transit houses, pending the construction of new homes for them.
However, in a letter issued by Jakoa today, the department set a precondition that it could withdraw its compensation if residents did not give their full cooperation.
Sheikh Omar, who is special officer to Kluang MP Liew Chin Tong, said residents had expected a letter of guarantee for compensation, but was instead given a letter with preconditions that stated they could lose their compensation.
Sheikh Omar urged Jakoa to keep its promise and issue the letter of guarantee, after which the residents will comply and move out.
21 October 2015
Orang Asli homes razed before compensation finalised
The homes of 19 Orang Asli families in Kluang were today demolished even before a formal agreement on the terms of their relocation was signed.
Representative from the Kluang Land Department and Kluang Municipal Council moved in to demolish houses at Kampung Datuk Abdul Rahman Yassin at 9am today.
The local residents were to be placed at a ‘transit home’ at Balai Raya Batu 8 and other locations, pending new homes that would be built for them.
However, the demolition was opposed by the local folk as there was no black-and-white assurance that they would be properly compensated.
Demolition works were briefly halted as local residents negotiated for the terms of their relocation.
They were promised RM2,500 in cash, a replacement home for each of the 19 families and that they would be given jobs in a farming project.
The assurances will be put in an agreement which will be handed over to the community there on Friday by the Orang Asli Development Department (Jakoa).
Kluang Orang Asli villagers ordered to vacate homes
Orang Asli villagers in Kampung Abdul Rahman Yassin in Kluang have been given notices to vacate their village and homes of 45 years by today.
The Orang Asli Development Department (Jakoa) had on June 15, 2014, warned the villagers that they were squatting on private land and had also encroached into the Renggam Forest Reserve and faced eviction.
The latest notice to vacate followed two previous notices dated September 3 and 9 last year.
With the help of DAP, the villagers held a press conference yesterday and said they wanted to know the exact status of the property and the real reason for the eviction notices.
“According to a letter from the Kluang land office, dated October 15, 2015, the land belongs to the state government,” said DAP’s Sheikh Omar Ali, special officer to Kluang MP Liew Chin Tong.
He said the latest notice served as a final reminder for them to vacate their homes.
“Jakoa said the land is private property and a forest reserve while the land office stated the land is owned by the state government.
High Court grants Kampung Peta Orang Asli customary title, strikes out eviction order
The villagers of Kampung Peta gathered outside the courthouse in Johor Baru today, after their High Court eviction notice victory over the state government and Putrajaya. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Shufiyan Shukur, October 21, 2015.
The Jakun Orang Asli of Kampung Peta, which lies in the Endau-Rompin National Park, today won an important decision in their three-year fight against eviction.
“Johor High Court Judge Mohd Nazlan Ghazali declared that the notice of eviction handed down to them on January 17, 2012 was invalid and unlawful,” said M. Rajkumar who, along with Dr S. Yogeswaran and K. Mohan, was assigned to the case by the Orang Asli Rights Committee of the Bar Council.
“The judge said the eviction notice was issued pursuant to the National Land Code, which does not cover the customary rights of the Orang Asli.”
According to Rajkumar, the Court found that the Orang Asli were able to prove that their village had been in the area since the 1800s, predating the formation of the National Park and thus were customary owners of the land.
He said that the government agencies, in issuing the eviction notice, failed to take this into account, ignoring the customary rights of the Orang Asli, rights that had been acknowledged by various government departments over the years.
“The judge ordered the respondents (the State and Federal governments) to complete a survey of the entire 6,000ha area of the Endau Rompin National Park and adjacent Krau Forest Reserve within 18 months and to de-gazette areas previously gazetted as forest or wildlife reserve but fall within the customary lands of the Orang Asli of Kampung Peta,” said Rajkumar.
“The government must then restore those lands to the Orang Asli,” he added.
In addition, the court declared that there was a fiduciary duty by the state and federal governments to protect the customary land for the Orang Asli and not to intervene or to in anyway impair their rights over the land.
“This is an important declaration by the judge because it is in line with previous rulings by the Court of Appeal and the Federal Court.
– See more at: http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/citynews/johor-baru/article/high-court-grants-kampung-peta-orang-asli-customary-title-strikes-out-evict?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter#sthash.hdSoE3Ng.dpuf
A “middle man” had allegedly asked the family to withdraw their report on behalf of one of the teachers, or face trouble.The person had allegedly told the family that the teachers could make things hard for them as he has connections with police.
30 June 2015
Orang Asli pupil tied, kicked by teachers for allegedly stealing money
A 10-year-old Temiar pupil was tied up, kicked and beaten up by her teachers after being accused of stealing money from one of them, indigenous people’s advocacy group Centre of Orang Asli Concerns(COAC) coordinator Dr Colin Nicholas said.
The Standard 4 pupil of Sekolah Kebangsaan Kuala Betis in Gua Musang, Kelantan, sustained bruises on the face, arms and thigh because of the beating.
“She was accused of stealing. We do not know if it is true but even if it is, this is not the right way to do it,” Nicholas told The Malaysian Insider. He had also posted about the incident on the COAC Facebook page.
A police source, however, has confirmed to The Malaysian Insider that such an incident happened and the case was now being investigated under Section 323 of the Penal Code for voluntarily causing hurt.
Nicholas said the case occurred on June 15 but did not know if any action had been taken against the teachers.
There were, however, attempts to get the victim’s family to withdraw their report which was lodged by the victim’s grandmother at the Gua Musang district police station on June 27.
“I was told that the teachers still teaching at the school. The headmaster did come to visit but had requested for the family to withdraw their report and let the school handle the matter internally. How can you do this?” said Nicholas.
Accused of stealing some money from a teacher, a Standard 4 Temiar schoolgirl was tied up and beaten by three teachers at Sekolah Kebangsaan Kuala Betis on 15 June 2015. She was also kicked. Her body had numerous bruises on her face, arms and thigh.
We got to know of this the next day when our group returned to Kuala Betis from Kampung Pahong in Gua Musang. The JOAS-COAC team together with 12 community leaders and organizers from PACOS-Sabah had spent the night in Kampung Pahong for the last of the 3-day sewang held to end the mourning period of the late Pakcik Arom.
Discussion with JOAS-COAC-PACOS before visiting the girl’s family.
The newly-formed JOAS (Temiar) Women’s group based in Kampung Angkek was upset over the incident and was not sure how to go about getting redress. Fortunately in our group were teachers and trainers from PACOS-Sabah who were experienced in handling such cases, including providing the necessary counseling for the victim.
After a short discussion, the women decided to visit the girl and her parents and to encourage them to make a police report. And also to plan further action. Our group also joined them. Interviews were conducted with the girl and the family to get the full story.
Tryng to get the girl’s side of the story. The bruises and swelling were still visible a day after the beating.
According to Deena, the girl’s aunt, the girl was tied up and beaten by Cikgu Saki, Cikgu Arif and Cikgu Salib the day before (15 June 2015), until her face and arms were bruised, while her thigh was kicked by the teachers. The aunt brought the girl to the nearby government clinic the next day. The doctor took some photographs of the injuries and said that a report would be prepared once a police report was lodged.
It was the girl’s grandmother, Andak binti Caling, who eventually made the police report at the Gua Musang district police station on 27 June 2015.
Andak outside her house which is a distance away from the main village. Hence her fears that somebody can easily cause her harm without anyone knowing.
This was not the end of the story. On Sunday, 28 June 2015, a friend of one of the teachers, an Encik Ali, who is known to the girl’s grandmother, visited her at her farm house. He came with his wife and two children. He asked Andak to withdraw the police report, intimating that the teacher had connections with the police and that she can face a tough time the whole year ahead, having to make statement after statement.
He also told her that the teacher had evidence that the girl had stolen the money. Then he left.
But he also left the grandmother in a state of fear and great stress. She contacted JOAS project coordinator Yein who promptly made a police report on the matter that night at the Subang Jaya police station. (See earlier note for the police report.)
That same day, word was being received from the school that the headmaster and some teachers wanted to meet the grandmother the next day (Monday) to ask her to withdraw the police report. A small support group was galvanized to reassure Andak and to work out the next course of action.
The headmaster and some others did make a visit to Andak at her house on Monday.
Some of the members of the JOAS-Women (Temiar section) discussing the case on 16 June 2015.
But at about the same time a meeting was called for at Kampung Parik for some community leaders to meet and discuss the case. Nora, Deena and Andak of the women’s group attended, as did Dendi, Alang, Daud and Anjang of the Temiar network, among others.
The general consensus is that teachers who gang up among themselves to hit helpless children should not be allowed to teach in schools. No matter what the reason they may say they have for doing so. And schools should not protect such teachers.
The group resolved that they did not want to meet the teachers but instead wanted the police to investigate the case fully.
Also present at the meeting was local lawyer Siti Zainah who agreed to make sure the case is taken up by the Public Prosecutor.
The case has been verbally reported to SUHAKAM, the Malaysian Human Rights Commission, during a visit by JOAS leaders to the Commission on 23 June 2015.
We have been hearing of a number of similar cases happening to Orang Asli schoolchildren in Kelantan and Perak especially. JOAS, the Indigenous Peoples Network of Malaysia, is now asking our members to report such cases to us so that a list can be compiled to show the extent of such crimes being committed in Orang Asli schools.
CN-COAC | 29 June 2015
Pada 28hb Jun 2015, jam lebih kurang 10.12pm, saya terima panggilan daripada rakan saya nama Andak binti Caling (No.Telefon: ——) seorang Orang Asli suku kaum Temiar dari Kampung Betak, Kuala Betis dan dia beritahu saya bahawa pada 28hb Jun 2015, jam 9.35pm seorang Melayu bernama Ali yang berasal dari Kampung Asam, Kuala Betis datang ke rumah Andak dengan isteri dia dan dua orang anak kecil dia.
Ali mengatakan kepada Andak bahawa Andak harus tarik diri daripada kes yang Andak telah laporkan kepada Balai Polis Gua Musang pada 27hb Jun 2015 dengan Nombor Repot GUAMUSANG/004998/15. Ali mahu Andak tutup kes.
Ali adalah sahabat kepada cikgu yang mendera Siti Nur Azdilia (Sijil Nombor BJ 48174) di mana Siti adalah cucu Andak. Ali katakan cikgu itu bayar polis. Cikgu ada bukti menunjukkan Siti telah mencuri duit cikgu. Ali katakan jika Andak tak tutup kes, Andak akan ‘statement’ panjang-panjang tahun. Lepas itu, Ali pun tinggalkan rumah Andak.
Andak sekarang dalam ketakutan.
Berdasarkan pada mak cik kepada Siti namanya Deena (No.Telefon ——), pada 15hb Jun 2015, diSekolah Kebangsaan Kuala Betis, Siti telah diikat dan dipukul oleh Cikgu Saki, Cikgu Arif dan Cikgu Salib sehingga muka dan lengan dia penuh dengan lebam serta paha dia ditendang oleh cikgu juga setelah didapati mengambil duit cikgu.
Deena telah bawa Siti ke klinik untuk jumpa doktor pada 16hb Jun 2015. Doktor telah mengambil gambar luka-luka Siti dan katakan surat doktor akan disediakan selepas lapuran polis telah dibuat untuk Siti.
Seandainya Siti mengambil duit cikgu, Siti masih tidak boleh diberi hukuman pukulan sehingga muka lebam atau tendangan di mana-mana bahagian badan. Hukuman kepada Siti adalah satu penderaan dan telah melanggari Konvensyen Hak Kanak-Kanak (CRC) dan juga melanggari Deklarasi Hak Orang Asal Pertubuhan Bangsa Bersatu (UNDRIP)
Pada 23hb Jun 2015, saya bersama rakan-rakan telah membuat laporan secara lisan kepada Pesuruhjaya Suruhanjaya Hak Asasi Manusia Malaysia (SUHAKAM). Pesuruhjaya yang menerima laporan lisan saya namanya Encik James Deva Nayagam. Encik James ada katakan bahawa SUHAKAM akan hubungi pihak SK Kuala Betis untuk membuat siasatan atas kes penderaan tersebut.
Kita berharap bahawa pihak polis akan membuat siasatan dan mengambil tindakan dengan serta-merta supaya keselamatan Andak binti Caling dan Siti Nur Azdilia terjamin.
Sekian, Terima Kasih.
Members of Orang Asli villages deep in Gua Musang, Kelantan, claim that teachers stationed in the interiors are not providing proper education to their children, coming to class only two or three days a week.
However, those living nearer to town, say that education is being provided regularly.
Video: Teachers not teaching Orang Asli kids, parents claim
THE RAIN FOREST INN, CAMERON HIGHLANDS
Rain Forest Inn is located in Bertam Valley amidst the lush rainforest and cascading waterfalls. It offers locally handcrafted rooms from which views of the ..
The Rakyat Post
Orang Asli inn in Cameron Highlands an inspiration to his community
John (in green shirt) with his guests and business partner Ong Gee Tat (second from right). — TRP pic by Fernando Fong
CAMERON HIGHLANDS, Jan 10, 2015:
John Bah Tuin, 39, is running a successful inn in Kg Menson near Bertam Valley that has been attracting tourists from all over the world since June last year.
His inn is unique among the many accommodations in Cameron Highlands as it is located in a forest with a river and waterfall flowing with crystal clear water.
Aptly named the Rain Forest Inn, the rooms are styled after traditional Orang Asli homes and constructed mostly with bamboo.
John’s partner Ong Gee Tat is a chicken supplier from Ringlet, here.
Today, his inn is rated among the best in Cameron Highlands by customers at Booking.com, which offers online accommodation booking for more than 585,000 hotels worldwide.
If you wish to donate to the fund, the bank details are as follows:
Swift Code: MBBEMYKL
Routing Code: 026001287
Contact number: 0133508058
How you can help the Orang Asli affected by the floods
We were in the hilly areas of Ulu Tual over Christmas where it rained almost non-stop – sometimes, a continuous heavy drizzle, at other times roof-bashing thunderstorms. One of the newly-built bridges was washed away and others had water waiting to breach their tops.
No wonder then that the low-lying areas, including major towns on the east coast, are flooded. The upland forests – that is, whatever is left of them – are no longer able to sponge up the deluge of waters from the heavens.
Many Orang Asli areas are affected by the floods. Some have houses inundated, forcing the Orang Asli to move to higher ground. Several Orang Asli have also been stranded for several days, unable to return to their villages due to breaks in the road system.
While we know that some of the more severely affected Orang Asli villages are receiving aid from the government and other disaster-relief services, including JAKOA, there are many other villages that are considered ‘less urgent’ and are being told to wait.
The standard operating procedure, we are told, is that only if the situation does not improve in three days (after the report is made), will government aid (especially food) be distributed to them.
We appreciate that the emergency assistance services have their hands full and have their priority areas to service first. But from our network members, we know there are other villages, as well as individual Orang Asli, who also need urgent assistance.
In response, the JOAS-Semenanjung Action Committee, the Peninsula wing of the Indigenous Peoples Network of Malaysia, has begun collecting information from its members and coordinating the collection and distribution of donations and other assistance to un-helped Orang Asli areas.
A list of some of the affected areas, and the contacts for the respective village coordinators, can be assessed from the following google drive document, which is being regularly updated: JOAS Flood Relief.
Should you want to help directly, we strongly suggest that you get in touch with the Contact Person based in the area for more information on their situation there, on what their needs are, and how you can help.
Alternatively, JOAS has set up a Flood Relief Fund with the Center for Orang Asli Concerns as its administering organization. The donations will be distributed to the local coordinators who would be able to procure or purchase the items needed at the local level. Receipts will be issued.
If you wish to donate to the fund, the bank details are as follows:
Swift Code: MBBEMYKL
Routing Code: 026001287
Contact number: 0133508058
Please make sure to send us an email to inform us of your bank transfer.
For further information, please contact the following JOAS secretariat members:
Sze Ning 012-6061592 | Yein 012-6863457
For updates and the latest situation, go to the JOAS Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/joasmalaysia?ref=ts&fref=ts
For a list of the donations received so far, and the disbursements made, please go to: http://bit.ly/1xYChDw
LATEST UPDATE: There are still many more Orang Asli villages affected by the flood that has yet to receive aid (or adequate aid). Our Peninsular Malaysia Action Committee (AJK Bertindak) has been trying to reach these villagers for the latest information. As of today, we have started distributing funds collected through our efforts on Facebook and your generous donations.
As of 7.20pm yesterday, RM2,000 out of the RM3,520 collected has been transferred to 3 areas through elected representative who will purchase food supply and distribute it. Acounts breakdown is viewable here: http://bit.ly/1xqboFO
What we need:
1. Volunteers to help contact people/ organizations who are able to reach and to distribute aid (as listed) to the villagers on the list. Please note that many of these villagers are surrounded by flood water. We recommend that you contact the Contact Person based in the area for more information.
2. Monetary donations. This will be distributed on a needs basis. Our supporting NGO based in Peninsular Malaysia, The Center for Orang Asli Concerns (COAC), will be accepting the donations on our behalf.
Maybank account number: 014196001605
Account contact number: +60133508058
Email: email@example.com (please drop us an email so that we can email you a receipt)
For overseas transfers please include the following information:
SWIFT code: MBBEMYKL
Address: Malayan Banking Berhad, Level 14, Menara Maybank, 100 Jalan Tun Perak, 50050 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
For transfers from the US, please include this Routing Code: 026001287
We thank everyone who has helped spread the word and made donations.
JOAS secretariat members contact numbers: Sze Ning 0126061592 and Yein 0126863457
NGO: Nurses shun ‘dirty and uncouth’ Orang Asli
There is a concern that the lifespan of the Orang Asli ss only 53 years when other races could live up to 75.
Nurses shun ‘dirty and uncouth’ Orang Asli http://bit.ly/1FmyyAi
Turning their backs on the oath to serve without prejudice, staff nurses are purportedly refusing to treat Orang Asli patients.
This was among the issues raised during a meeting between the Orang Asli Villages Network of Peninsular Malaysia (JKOASM) and United Nations special rapporteur for health Dr Dairius Puras.
“Most staff nurses do not want to treat Orang Asli patients as they feel they are dirty and uncouth people,” said JKOASM representative Shafie Dris in a statement today.
During last Saturday’s meeting in Kuala Lumpur, he added that issues such as lack of proper clinics and transportation facilities during emergencies were also brought to the rapporteur’s attention.
Shafie said JKOASM also highlighted problems concerning the supply of clean water, which has led to various illnesses like diarrhoea, eyesore and skin diseases.
He claimed that one of the main reasons behind the Orang Asli’s deteriorating health condition was losing access to their traditional medicines.
“The invasion into Orang Asli customary lands has resulted in the destruction of the source for herbal medicine that can be used to treat diseases like eyesores and skin ailments,” he said.
Jaringan Kampung Orang Asli Semenanjung Malaysia (JKOASM) coordinator Shafie Dris (left) said that issues pertaining to the Orang Asli settlement had been agreed upon by the Johor state government in 1984.
The land was to be gazetted as reserves for the Orang Asli.
Orang Asli to stay put on land despite threats Villagers in Kluang staking their claim on oil palm trees planted… http://fb.me/3VFxUmItr
Orang Asli to stay put on land despite threats
A group of Orang Asli in Kluang, Johor, are claiming their right to cultivate 140 acres of oil palm land, despite facing physical threats.
The residents of Kampung Orang Asli Pengkalan Tereh said a group of workers who were clearing the area told them to leave or they would have to face the police.
Umno chief Ramli Usof told Malaysiakini that about 20 indigenous people had been cultivating the land they rented from a developer since 1983.
He said they were only made aware that the land had been sold to another company in May this year, when the clearing work started last week.
Expressing their dissatisfaction to the company workers, the Orang Asli were however, in turn, threatened by the workers.
“The Orang Asli said they were told by the workers that the police will be called in if they were to disrupt the land clearing work,” he said.
Ramli, together with the Orang Asli, lodged a police report against the company at the Kluang police station last Friday.
A PIONEERING WORK!
Cartoon Orang Asli in Malaysia
Animasi Kartun Orang Asli pertama di Malaysia
Published on Apr 15, 2014
Animasi ini menceritakan tentang masalah-masalah yang dihadapi oleh masyarakat Orang Asli dan bagaimana mereka mempertahankan tanah dan wilayah adat mereka.
Diadaptasikan dari buku komik ‘Kartun Kisah Pemetaan Komuniti’ karya Abri Yok Chopil & Sinui Pai Nanek Sengik (SPNS), terbitan Pusat KOMAS
Video ini adalah hasil produksi bersama UndiMsia! dan Pusat KOMAS
This animation tells the story of the struggles of the Orang Asli and how they defend their rights to their ancestral and customary land.
It is adapted from the ‘Kartun Kisah Pemetaan Komuniti’ which was originally written by Abri Yok Chopil and Sinui Pai Nanek Sengik (SPNS), and published by Pusat KOMAS.
This video is co produced with Pusat KOMAS
[Breaking news] Mah Meri from Carey Island arrested for defending ancestral grave
The backhoe on the customary land of the Mah Meri working close to a grave.
Roslan anak Ligam, 54, was detained overnight so as to enable the police to carry out investigations into land clearing actvities in the Mah Meri’s traditional territories of Kampung Bakar, Sungai Bumbun, Pulau Carey. Kampung Bakar is a small satellite hamlet of about 50 persons next to Kampung Sungai Bumbun on Pulau Carey.
The following is a report compiled by Koong Hui Yein and Jenita Engi, with information from the villagers affected.
Date of Incident: Tuesday, 16 September 2104.
Place: Kampung Bakar, Sungai Bumbun, Pulau Carey, Selangor
Ethnic group: Mah Meri
Two Indonesian workers, husband and wife team, came to measure the site, informing villagers that the area behind the Dewan Kampung (village hall) will be the site of an Indian temple. The couple left after finishing measuring.
Pakcik Kisah anak Aken saw bulldozer entering the village compound and heading towards area near his wife’s grave, and started digging. The digging was about 200 meters from the Dewan and about 10 meters away from the grave.
Pak Kisah got worried and approached the tractor, which had two Indian men in it. One of them saw Pak Kisah and went down to confront Pak Kisah, shouting, “Lu manyak action ah! Lu manyak garang ah!” (You think you are very big? You think you are fierce?)
According to Pak Kisah, he did not say anything before that. Then the Indians started taking out metal poles, about 1.5 meters in length, and pointed and shouted at Pak Kisah.
“Kalau kamu tak pindah kubur kamu tu, saya akan ambil semua kawasan kamu”.
(If you don’t move the graves, I will take all of your land.”)
The Indian is named Supia, according to villagers. They were hitting the tractor with their metal poles as a sign of warning to Pak Kisah with gesture of about to hit Pak Kisah. Pak Kisah felt scared and threatened.
After this commotion, the tractor continued working and was driven back to the area near the Dewan. Then there was a lorry who came by to unload cement bricks, metal poles, gravels and sand.
Then Roslan called up Balai Polis Banting to lodge a report. Half an hour later, one police patrol car (BHG 9153) came with two policemen in uniform. Roslan and the Indian man were arguing while policemen were there.
The Indian complained that they had made so many reports about Orang Asli trespassing “their” land and no actions taken.
According to Samsudin, his father, Roslan, had himself lodged 3 police reports since 16 Sept 2013.
Then, more policemen came, but not in uniform. They came in two cars (WJY 9413 and WKP 1850). One of them took Roslan aside and brought him into one of the cars (WKP 1850). The police said that Roslan will be taken away for purpose of “siasat” (investigation). This was about 3pm.
7 of Roslan’s friends and family arrived at the Banting police station to find out what happened to Roslan.
One of the officers came out together with Roslan and explained to the group that Roslan will be detained until tomorrow after being investigated by Inspector Khairul.
He said that Roslan was being detained to help investigation based on a report lodged by Supia’s group.
Kampung Bakar is not in an Orang Asli Reserve. But that area was their traditional territory for hundreds of years. The Mah Meri villagers have demanded the group of Indians to present proof of land title to the area but to date no documents were shown to villagers.
Their native customary land is sized at about 34 acres.
For more information, please contact:
Samsudin anak Roslan (0111-437 7014)
Kampung Bakar, Pulau Carey
for first hand information
Hui Yein (012 686 3457)
Jaringan Orang Asal SeMalaysia (JOAS)
(left) The police questioning the trespassers. (right) After the arrest, plainclothes police/special branch officers remained as the villagers discussed the incident.
Photos by Kampung Bakar villagers.
11:11AM Sep 17, 2014
Orang Asli arrested for defending ancestral land
An Orang Asli man was arrested by police for when he lodged a report that “outsiders” were trespassing on his ancestral land in Pulau Carey.
According to eyewitnesses, Roslan Ligam, 53, was arrested at around 3pm yesterday and taken to the Banting police station.
“We were told he was arrested because he was trespassing on land that belonged to others and his statement is required to assist on a police report made by them,” his son Samsudin, 30, told Malaysiakini today.
A group of villagers have gathered at the police station to show support for Roslan this morning.
According to villager Kisah anak Aken, a couple came to the village yesterday morning and started measuring the plot of land, informing villagers that it is for a Hindu temple.
Kisah said he saw a backhoe entering the village compound at noon and digging the land which was located about 200 meters from the village community hall, about 10 meters away from his wife’s burial site.
Kisah said he was “yelled at and threatened with long metal poles by two men” on the backhoe.
He said that one by the name of “Supiah” yelled, “Kalau kamu tak pindah kubur kamu itu, saya akan ambil semua kawasan kamu!” (If you do not move your grave, I will take all your land!).
Roslan then lodged a police report, only to find himself arrested, when the police came.
The villagers claimed that the land, although not listed under the Orang Asli Reserve, has been occupied by the Mah Meri tribe for hundreds of years.
Despite numerous attempts, the Banting district police could not be reached for comment.
IPOH 18 August 2014
Johnny Pandak, 29, from Kampung Orang Asli Batu Berangkai in Kampar, went to pluck petai. He left at about noon but did not return.
His uncle went to look for him and found him on a tree. He was unconscious. Police believe that Johnny had fallen and got stuck on one of the branches.
Star, Orang asli found dead hanging from petai tree
12:57PM Jun 24, 2014
Villagers win back their native rights land
Bidayuh landowners in Kampung Nyegol, Kampung Sting and Kampung Muk Ayun in Upper Bengoh in Padawan, near Kuching, see their legal victory against the Sarawak government over 8,594 hectares of their native customary rights (NCR) land as a special Gawai Dayak (Dayak festival) gift.
The High Court in Kuching ruled for them yesterday when state government legal officers told the court that the state would not proceed with its proposed Bengoh Dam National Park and the proposed Bungo Range National Park Extension 1, covering an area of 5,022 hectares and 3,572 hectares respectively.
“Since they had just celebrated their festival, their victory is indeed a Gawai Dayak gift to the villagers.
Yesterday we embarked on a three-day training on women’s political participation with Orang Asli women and men from several states. Our team in Kuantan sent in this brief report:
Day 1, Friday, 20 June 2014
EMPOWER’s Women’s Political Participation training for Orang Asli kicked off today with 31 eager and energetic participants from Perak, Negri Sembilan, Melaka, and Pahang wanting to stand up and do something for their sidelined communities.
We love everyone’s enthusiasm! EMPOWER is coping with their enthusiasm with our equally passionate Executive Director Maria Chin, President Janarthani, accounts officer Siti Nor and Program Officer Kar Fai.
Illuminating insights and experiences on Orang Asli activism were shared by JKOASM veteran activist Tijah Chopil, as well as Bar Council’s Committee on Orang Asli Rights’s Siti Kasim. We are humbled by the mutual respect and dignified struggle of the Orang Asli communities.
KUANTAN: An Orang Asli youth found dead at a farm in Kampung Sungai Gayung, Kedaik near Rompin early today, is believed to have been murdered.
Rompin District acting police chief ASP Mohd Razali Razak said the body of Rosli a/l Kam Pak Chin, 20, which was lying near a motorcycle at Jalan Ladang Far East Kedaik around 3.30 am, had signs of injury.
“A close friend of the deceased discovered the body and informed the family. The deceased’s elder sister lodged a report and also told police that there were bloodstains and injuries around her brother’s left ribs,” he said when contacted here today.
He said the body had been sent to Rompin district hospital for post mortem and the case was being investigated under Section 302 of the Penal Code. –BERNAMA
Among the affected villages are Kampung Sat, Kampung Raz, Kampung Gamus, Kampung Tidung and Kampung Kejau.
Orang Asli say ‘no’ to project
Orang asli hit hard by water shortage
Friday April 4, 2014 MYT 6:47:09 AM
KUALA LUMPUR: The orang asli community is also hit hard by water shortage problems caused by the dry season.
The Jakun community of 30 families in Kampung Orang Asli Tanjong Keruing in Pekan, Pahang, is not only desperately short of clean water and suffering from dehydration but also plagued by diarrhoea, especially the children and the elderly, due to the lack of clean water.
Proham (Association for the Promotion of Human Rights) member Tan Sri Dr Ramon Navaratnam said the villagers were suffering because there has been no rain there since late January, as the Yayasan Kajian dan Pembangunan Masyarakat (Foundation for Community Studies and Development) found during a visit to the area last week.
“To compound the problem, the orang asli are not able to afford bottled water from shops,” he said yesterday.
Dr Ramon said orang asli groups in the surrounding areas were likely to be suffering from similar hardships.
According to village spokesman Mohamad Sulong, water levels in their wells were low and the water quickly used up.
“The families would take turns to scoop water from the well, leaving little else for the others waiting in line. The same cycle is repeated,” said Mohamad.
“The wait is tiring, frustrating and disrupting community harmony.”
In a telephone interview, Pos Hau in Kelantan orang asli representative Anggah Asang said eight families were affected by the lack of water supply during the dry season in Kampung Keliat in the Lojing district of Kelantan.
Video: Orang Asli: Constant struggle for land rights
The issues of ‘original’ peoples around the world is very much the same and perhaps the most crucial issue that binds them is land.
The Orang Asal of the peninsula have a concept of ‘tanah rayau’, loosely translated to ‘roaming land’; large areas of land that surround their villages. This is their customary land in which they hunt and gather plants, herbs, fruit — whatever they need. This is their supermarket.
And this is a major cause of their struggle with the government; especially when their tanah rayau acquires high economic value.
The struggle of the people of Kampung Chang, Sungai Gapai in Bidor, Perak is the same as all other Orang Asli villagers. This is the village of Han Yok Chopil, better known as Tijah of Jaringan Kampong Orang Asli Semenanjung Malaysia roughly translated to Peninsular Malaysia Orang Asli Village Network
KAMPUNG CHANG, SUNGAI GAPAI, BIDOR, PERAK
The struggle of the people of Kampung Chang, Sungai Gapai in Bidor, Perak is the same as all other Orang Asli villagers. This is the village of Han Yok Chopil, better known as Tijah of Jaringan Kampong Orang Asli Semenanjung Malaysia roughly translated to Peninsular Malaysia Orang Asli Village Network
YAHOO! NEWS MALAYSIA
Orang Asli more ‘special’ than Malays, deserve better treatment, says ex-judge
PUTRAJAYA, Dec 24 — Putrajaya should treat the indigenous people in Peninsular Malaysia better as they hold a “more special” constitutional position than do the country’s Malays, a former high-ranking judge said today.
Datuk Mohd Noor Abdullah, who has since retired as a Court of Appeal judge, suggested the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) government may have taken the tiny community of tribal Orang Asli voters — some who still live a semi-nomadic lifestyle — for granted since they are not considered as “kingmakers”.
“The government looks at Sabah and Sarawak as a saving [sic]. Orang Asli are just a couple of per cent… they do not determine the government,” Mohd Noor told reporters during the Society of Peninsular Malaysia’s Orang Asli (POASM) extraordinary general meeting here.
“This is a mistake, because sometimes the minority determines who wins. Don’t just dismiss them, they will be a determiner later.”
Mohd Noor explained that the Orang Asli’s position is more special than the Malays since the Federal Constitution provides for any law to be made if it will benefit their community, who are undisputed as the country’s original settlers.
He also noted that Article 8 in the Federal Constitution, which states that all Malaysian citizens are to be treated equally in law.
The ex-judge said the constitutional provision does not invalidate any provision “for the protection, well-being or advancement of the aboriginal peoples of the Malay peninsula”.
“For [the] Orang Asli, any type of law can (be implemented). This means they are more special… If they are more special, the government should have been more concerned,” he said.
“This land was opened up by them, it is theirs, but they are the ones dropping out, they are marginalised. Things must be done so that they are on the same level, or even better than other communities.”
The police have checked the boys in at the Sik Rest House while waiting for the Department of Orang Asli Development (JAKOA) in Gerik to send them back to Kampung Batu Gong.
The Sun daily
Five Orang Asli boys allege forced labour
SIK, Kedah (Nov 28, 2013): Five Orang Asli boys from Pahang walked aimlessly for almost 20 kilometres after they were ordered to leave a watermelon farm where they had been allegedly forced to labour for several days with nothing to show but a watermelon.
The exhausted and hungry boys, aged 11 to 16, from Kampung Batu Gong in Chini, were found wandering by a police patrol team in Kampung Gajah Putih, Jeneri, at about 3pm yesterday.
One of the boys, Boon Barok, 13, said a man they knew as ‘Ah Yau’ had come to their Pahang village and offered them jobs as workers at his watermelon farm two weeks ago.
“We came by express bus, the tickets for which were bought by the man. During the several days we worked at the farm, we were only given lunch but no dinner.
“However, yesterday morning the man ordered us to return to our village, saying he did not have jobs for us. We were given a watermelon but no money,” he told reporters today.
Boon’s four friends are Man Yeh, 11, Asmi Asai, 13, Husain Jemoi, 14, and Seri Salenda, 16.
Years ago, when the government came to seize their lands, evicted them and handed their lands over to plantation companies – there was little the Orang Asli community could do to fight back.
One individual, Shafie Dris, called TV stations hoping that somebody would air their case but one station simply responded that they had checked with the land registration office and said “sorry, no story.”
“No one came to help us,” Shafie Dris said, his eyes started to tear and his voice choked up as he described why, against all odds, he ventured to become a one-man, unlicenced broadcaster for his community.
“My wishes are simple,” said Shafie, an Orang Asli from Temerloh, Pahang, who received almost no formal education but speaks fluent Bahasa Malaysia.
“I believe that if the Orang Asli themselves don’t speak up and raise a voice of protest, then no one would know that we have a problem… this is my real intention for making videos.”
According to Orang Asal activists and leaders, a viable future for the tribes of Malaysia’s oldest inhabitants, would be to recognise their way of life and their right to their ancestral lands.
Lawyer Anthony Williams Hunt, who is a Semai based in Ipoh, says that any policy that wants to help the Orang Asal must start from a recognition of this central fact.
In Malaysia, the Orang Asal feel far away from home
147 families were resettled in the Desa Temuan housing scheme.
Yet after nine years, only 30 of the original 147 families who were resettled in free houses in the Desa Temuan housing scheme, remain. The rest according to headman Ibrahim Chat, have left to live near forests in Gombak, Sungai Buloh and Banting.
The Temuan from the housing scheme did not return to their ancestral lands. That land was taken to build Damansara Perdana and the houses and aid they received was their compensation.
But they did return to a way of life of their ancestors despite being given an opportunity to transition to a way of life that modern Malaysian society wanted them to.
The way of life that this group of Temuan chose to return to centres on a relationship with the forest and the natural world that is sometimes at odds with how techno-industrial Malaysia treats its forests.
For the Orang Asal, the forest functions as their shopping mall, their work place, their utilities provider, their playground, their cultural centre and it houses their religion.
It explains why almost all of the young adult Temuan who were met at their homes in Desa Temuan wanted to leave for the forest even though some of them practically grew up in the city.
The fear now, Hunt says, is that the government wants to amend the Orang Asli Act of 1954 to parcel out between two to six acres of land for each Orang Asal family.
“We could lose hundreds of thousands of acres of our ancestral lands,” says Hunt, claiming that the policy is a bigger plan to create more plantation settlements.
The proposed amendments sparked the largest Orang Asal protest in Malaysian history. In 2009, more than 10,000 of them donned traditional costumes and descended on Putrajaya to march to the Ministry of Rural and Regional Development.
The amendments were not spoken of after that but its spectre has returned. Last June, says Orang Asal activist Abry Yok Chopil, the government announced that they were “refining the amendments”.
For the full article, click on http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/in-malaysia-the-orang-asal-feel-far-away-from-home
Two grassroots Orang Asli groups have strongly accused the government of trying to steal as much as 60 percent of their ancestral land by pushing through a law in Parliament without consulting the people most affected.
Orang Asli representatives from villages in Pahang and Malacca have put their voices to a growing protest against Act 134, an amendment to the Aborigines Act 1954.
The amendment, they said, would allow the government to assign Orang Asli land titles to individuals, breaking up the communal land ownership that is now in practice. The result is that land that is not assigned, which could make up the bulk, would then revert to the state governments.
“We are sad to hear about Act 134… with this Act, as much as 60 percent of our land will be lost,” Shafie Dris (left) from Jaringan Orang Asli Pahang (JOAP) told reporters in Kuala Lumpur after submitting a two-page petition to Rural and Regional Development Minister Shafie Apdal.
“These are the lands where our ancestors are buried and the fruits from which have been jointly shared and used to sustain our way of life.”
Shafie warned that the government’s attempt to parcel out the land under the proposed amendment would also cause friction among the Orang Asli community who currently share the land.
The representative from Jaringan Orang Asli Malacca, Faridah Goskan (right), chimed in and said the livelihood of the Orang Asli was already under threat as the Orang Asli Development Department (Jakoa) has lured many out of their forested lands for minimal payouts.
Many of these Orang Asli were given small land grants, for which they were then required to pay a hefty tax afterwards to keep, Faridah said.
Last week, Peninsular Malaysia Orang Asli Villages Coalition (JKOASM) coordinator Tijah Yok Chopil also protested against the government’s move to amend the 1954 Act.
Tijah said that the government has yet to engage with human rights activists, the Human Rights Commission (Suhakam) and the Bar Council about the amendment.
Very mysterious – Nobody knows anything abt it. http://goo.gl/4W88z Orang Asli: Act being amended w/o our ken – Ahmad Fadli KC (Mkini)
Orang Asli: Act being amended without our knowledge
Published on Jul 12, 2013
An NGO representing peninsular Malaysia’s orang asli community says they have been left in the dark about amendments to the 1954 Aboriginal People’s Act which will be tabled in parliament.
A vocal Orang Asli rights group today is disputing the government’s move to amend the Aborigines Act 1954 in Parliament, alleging that the amendment was being made without their knowledge despite being a key stakeholder under the Act.
“We object because no copy of the amendment was given to us,” said Peninsular Malaysia Orang Asli Villages Coalition (JKOASM) coordinator Tijah Yok Chopil (right) in a press conference today.
She said that the government has yet to engage with human rights activists, the Human Rights Commission (Suhakam) and the Bar Council about the amendment.
“The government must hand over a copy of the amendment now, otherwise when they bring it to Parliament we wouldn’t even know its contents,” she said.
Rural and Regional Development Minister Shafie Apdal was reported as saying on June 28 that the government will amend the Act in order to improve the protection for the Orang Asli community.
He said that the legislation will be discussed in detail with Suhakam to ensure that its systematic and holistic implementation.
He said that the improvements in the amendments will cover areas of rights along will culture, poverty, education and health, Malay daily Berita Harian reported.
Yesterday, Suhakam commissioner Dr Khaw Lake Tee was also reported as saying that the proposed amendment was yet to be discussed with the commission.
Also read the Free Malaysia Today article
Orang Asli Matters
While searching for my gigs of photos, found this one, taken few years back at Ipoh Railway Station. Orang Asli standing proud with Augustine Anthony, Bah Tony (if I remember right) and British High Commissioner William Boyd McCleary.
COMMENT If an amendment to the Aboriginal People’s Act 1954 is passed in this session of Parliament , the Orang Asli stand to lose 645, 000 hectares of their native land, warns the Centre for Orang Asli Concerns. In Sarawak, there are 200 Native Customary Rights cases waiting to be heard in the courts. – Taib weakened by authoritative court ruling
Historical and legislative challenges, as well as policy capture, continue to confront the most disadvantaged and marginalised communities – the Orang Asli of Peninsular Malaysia and the indigenous communities of Sabah and Sarawak – on their rights to their land and access to resources.
Native Customary Rights to land are recognised in Sabah and Sarawak. Native Customary Rights have been recognised in Sabah and Sarawak, through the federal constitution and state and laws, backed by unambiguous judgments by the Federal Court (Malaysia’s apex court) and Court of Appeal.
Despite this, the respective state governments simply pretend the court judgments do not apply to their land policies.
Losing trust in politicians
The local communities are losing trust in their politicians who are holding public office. They feel their elected representatives are protecting the state and business interests through policy capture.
Will the members of parliament oppose the amendments to the Aboriginal People’s Act 1954, which is to be tabled in the current session of Parliament?
We must stand alongside our indigenous and Orang Asli communities and demand our elected representatives protect the rights to land of the poorest communities in this resource rich land of Malaysia.
We must continue to voice out that our elected legislators should vote for laws and policies based on human rights, sustainability and equity. We must stop our support for politicians trapped in the web of policy capture to enrich themselves and their business cronies.
JOSIE FERNANDEZ is an anti-corruption and environmental activist and an Asian Public Intellectual Fellow.
Read the whole article in
Free Malaysia Today
July 2, 2013
If an amendment to the Aboriginal People’s Act 1954 is passed in Parliament, the Ornag Asli may lose 645,000 hectares of their native land.
To find out more, click on
18 March 2013| last updated at 09:42PM
Emaliana makes Orang Asli community proud with 4As in STPM
TAPAH: For Emaliana a/p Bah Ali, the journey to school every morning was an ordeal and she was frequently late but the hardwork was worth it to fill her hunger for knowledge.
Today, Emaliana made history as the first Orang Asli in Perak to obtain excellent results in the 2012 Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM).
The student of Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Buyong Adil here scored a Cumulative Grade Point Average of 3.75 when she obtained A for Business Studies and A- for three other subjects namely General Paper, Geography as well as Economics.
“My school was about 23 kilometres from my house and I travel by car with my sister who is a teacher at Sekolah Kebangsaan Satu (in Tapah) to get to school but whenever she goes for a course, I have to take the bus.
“The bus service only starts operations at 6.45am, and I would be late for school but luckily my teacher understood my predicament,” she said when met at her house in Kampung Batu 14 1/2, Jalan Pahang here today.
She said she studied like other students and depended heavily on the lessons in school.
“For me, my recipe for success was to focus on school lessons, willing to ask questions, share knowledge, respect for teachers and friends, praying hard and appreciating my parents’s sacrifice,” she said.
Emaliana, the sixth of seven siblings, hopes to become a teacher to serve the Orang Asli community.– Bernama
ANOTHER CRISIS FOR THE ORANG ASLI, THIS TIME, IN KELANTAN! IT SEEMS THAT, THIS TIME, IT IS NOT BN THAT IS RESPONSIBLE BUT DAP!!!
A large part of the 4,000 hectares of Sungai Relai Forest Reserve in Gua Musang, Kelantan had been logged by a firm allegedly linked to Perak DAP chairman Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham.
Last month, Malaysiakini had reported that the traditional way of life of the Orang Asli community in Gua Musang is being threatened by endemic logging for mass plantation under the Kelantan government’s Ladang Rakyat programme.
Furthermore, the logging activities have destroyed the water catchment areas of several villages there and turned rivers murky with muddy water.
The Kelantan and Terengganu Orang Asli Development Department (Jakoa) has acknowledged that the Orang Asli community in Gua Musang, Kelantan is being threatened by widespread logging and water pollution, but that the causes are beyond its control.
While the Gua Musang Orang Asli community in Kelantan battle chainsaws that threaten to transplant their traditional forest with plantations, one village here is up against a different kind of challenge.
Kampung Kelaik, situated along the quiet Gua Musang-Cameron Highlands highway, is isolated from the main cluster of Orang Asli settlements minus a ‘post’ or administrative centre like the rest.
Villagers here have no access to running water and complain that the river that they depend upon is literally turning brownish red, and are fingering the mining activities uphill for their woes.
“We don’t have running water here, so we need to rely on the river but the Kelaik River is red in colour,” said Angah Pandak (right), 55, pointing to the black and cracked skin on his leg, he claimed that the water was causing sickness among the local population.
The only nearby alternative river, Sungai Chia, he explained, was also off limits as villagers fear pesticides in the water from an upstream oil palm plantation.
An uphill 40-minute journey by four wheel finds an iron ore factory perched on the hilltop, churning out rusty-red water into what appear to be ponds dug out of the ground.
‘Even rice in pot turns red’
“This is the water that we are getting, even when we cook rice, our rice turn red in colour,” said another villager, Angah Muda as he pointed down at the ponds.
- 28 Dec 2012
- The Star Malaysia
Orang asli in dire straits
Years of protest by community against logging fall on deaf ears
GUA MUSANG: Years of protests have come to naught for an estimated 10,000 orang asli who are living in dire straits due to extensive logging and forest conversion in Kelantan.
Massive heap: Logs piled on the side of a logging trail near Kg Angkek and Kg Podek in RPS Kuala Betis, where logging activities have resumed recently and affected their water supply.Orang asli activists, who have accused the state government of turning a deaf ear to their grouses, are now upping the ante in the battle to have their land rights legally recognised.
One of them, Dendy Johari, 20, claimed that Mentri Besar Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat’s administration was not taking responsibility for their welfare.
“The MB must understand our problems as they affect us directly, day in and day out. We are not greedy for a lot of land.
He said the orang asli were also disappointed with the state Orang Asli Development Department (Jakoa) as it had not assisted them despite numerous complaints about logging.
Summary of their other woes:
1 Water tanks that were installed in 2010 ran out, and now they uses river water.
2 Logging has muddied the rivers, while pesticide use in plantations has triggered fears of water pollution and health issues.
3 Vast areas of logged forest have been converted to monocrop industrial plantations, including latex timber clone plantations. This has affected their livelihood as they depended on the forests for their food and materials for their craftwork, medicine and other daily requirements.
They are outraged that all of these activities have been done throughout the years with scant regard for their well-being as well as no prior consultation with them.
Awir is one of a rising number of people who have been fighting for their land rights to be legally recognised by the state government.
Click on Logged out and read the reports following it…
- 28 Dec 2012
- The Star Malaysia
Expert: Replacing forests with LTCS destroys biodiversity
We are talking about thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of species. Some are known to be rare, some found only in Kelantan. — LIM TECK WYN
GUA MUSANG: Conversion of natural forests to latex timber clone (LTC) plantations completely destroys an area’s natural biodiversity and ecology and could wipe out endemic species altogether, said environment and forestry expert Lim Teck Wyn.
“We are talking about thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of species.
In addition, he said plantations contained very little minor forest produce, such as rattan or bamboo – natural resources that the orang asli depend on.
“In Peninsular Malaysia, there are plans to create more than 400,000ha of LTCs, while I hear almost 200,000ha has been planned in Kelantan,” he said.
Lim claimed that some of the clearing work done in Kelantan was a violation of the guidelines, with scant regard for the hill slope degree or an environmental impact assessment.
He said very few animals could live in plantations as well, which further affect orang asli villages throughout the area.
“The orang asli don’t just live on a dot on the map.
“They live in a more complicated system which encompasses the forest surroundings,” he said.
Click on Logged out and read the reports following it…
- 28 Dec 2012
- The Star Malaysia
- By EILEEN NG firstname.lastname@example.org
DAP criticised for not living up to environmental promise
PETALING JAYA: MCA had slammed DAP for being hypocritical in championing for the environment but, at the same time, its leaders are allegedly involved in clearing out green lungs.
Kelantan MCA youth chief Gan Han Chuan said DAP’s anti-pollution stand is “purely a performance” and that the party was a hypocrite acting entirely on political interests.
He said DAP’s manifesto which touched on the environment is nothing more than empty promises to fish for votes.
“In reality, DAP has wreaked severe damage to the environment and depleted green lungs. DAP is an absolutely hypocritical party – saying one thing, but performing the exact opposite,” he said in a statement yesterday.
He was referring to a report that a large part of the 4,000 hectares of Sungai Relai Forest Reserve in Gua Musang, Kelantan had been logged by a firm allegedly linked to Perak DAP chairman Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham.
The logging activity, which was believed to have started in April this year, had stripped the terrain bare and caused pollution to nearby villages.
Gan said DAP had repeatedly extolled environmental protection and promised to implement green policies but since governing Penang, major hillslope projects are still being carried out while the company purportedly linked to Ngeh had destroyed Kelantan’s forest reserves.
“DAP preached tirelessly on safeguarding the environment, but they are thousands of miles apart from practising it.
“Now that DAP has stakes in this personal interest of theirs, the concept of looking after the environment is shoved completely behind them,” he said.
Samsudin also admitted that 5kg of rice was given to each Orang Asli voter, but argued that it was not vote fishing exercise.
Instead the free rice was an ordinary aid to the underprivileged including Orang Asli and ordinary people, he stressed.
|2:39PM Dec 27, 2012|
A BN state assemblyperson has denied PKR’s allegation that the ruling coalition and the Orang Asli Development Department (Jakoa) has been holding “training sessions” to guide the Orang Asli voters in Tapah, Perak to vote BN.
Ayer Kuning assemblyperson and Tapah BN chairperson Samsudin Abu Hassan told Malay daily Sinar Harian that the programme, which his division organised, was to teach the Orang Asli voters the correct way to cast their ballots.
He explained that it was done after they found that the number of spoilt votes among Orang Asli voters in the last general election were high.
“We never force anybody to vote BN. It is their rights to vote whoever they want. We only taught them the way to mark and cast ballots correctly.
Orang Asli Matters
While searching for my gigs of photos, found this one, taken few years back at Ipoh Railway Station. Orang Asli standing proud with Augustine Anthony, Bah Tony (if I remember right) and British High Commissioner William Boyd McCleary.
2 The Malaysian Bar – Kampung Chang Sugai Gepai: “We are NOT …
Augustine Anthony reminded us that the Orang Asli are not alone in their struggle and friends from … Encik Augustine Anthony (Ketua Hal Ehwal Orang Asli, …
www.malaysianbar.org.my/human_rights/kampung_chang_sugai… – Cached
|5:58PM Dec 26, 2012|
Perak Pakatan Rakyat today claimed that the Tapah Orang Asli Development Department (Jakoa) has been holding sessions to “train” the local Orang Asli to vote for BN.
It claimed that the training sessions, allegedly organised in cooperation with an elected representative, were conducted in a series last month in all Orang Asli villages along Jalan Pahang there.
It added that programme participants were given two pieces of paper, which look like mock ballot papers for the Tapah parliamentary constituency and Chenderiang state constituency.
The Orang Asli were then “forced” to vote BN on the mock ballot papers in front of a Jakoa officer and the elected representative, it claimed.
“Those who voted BN on both the mock ballot papers were then rewarded with 5kg of rice,” Perak Pakatan said in a statement, cited by PAS organ Harakahdaily.
Masyarakat Orang Asli Tapah telah buang undi sebelum PRU ke-13? Mereka dipaksa undi dan memangkah BN dalam kertas undi di depan muka Dr Mah Hang Soon, JAKOA dan pimpinan UMNO. Kertas undi yang pangkah BN dapat beras 5kg sebagai sogokan. Tempoh masa 1 minggu untuk Dr Mah dan pihak berkenaan Jawab!
Will Najib WALK the talk? Or is he ALL talk?
|1:52PM Dec 26, 2012|
Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s claim to be a leader for all Malaysians will ring hollow should he fail to act on plight of the Orang Asli community in Pos Bihai, Kelantan.
Several Orang Asli children at SK Bihai were allegedly slapped by their teacher on Oct 23 for refusing to recite Islamic prayers after meals, despite the fact that they were not Muslims.
In a press release today, Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo said no action has been taken since the alleged incident took place and premier should look into the matter.
Orang Asli Slapping Incident
The Education Department in Gua Musang has been informed that teachers at the remote Kelantan school for Orang Asli children, SK Bihai, only taught the children three days a week.
This was made known at a dialogue with the department officers on Nov 1, SK Bihai Parent-Teacher Association deputy chairperson Arom Asir said.
The officers present included Gua Musang district education officer Mohammad Zahari Othman.
Orang Asli win back part of ‘Malay Reserve’ land
KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 19 — The High Court ordered today the Pahang Land and Mines Office to return parts of a 2,000-hectare piece of land near Temerloh it had gazetted as a Malay reserve to the Semelai aborigine tribe as the Orang Asli’s customary rights took precedence over others in a landmark land rights case.
“The rights accrued when the Semelai people inhabited the land even before other inhabitants, including the Malays, arrived.
“Both the Felcra and Malay reserve land are subject to the rights of the Orang Asli,” he was quoted as saying by the English-language news portal.
|10:41AM Dec 20, 2012|
The High Court has ruled for two Orang Asli villages in a claim over 2,036 hectares of land that the Pahang government gazetted as Malay reserve land and land belonging to Federal Land Consolidation and Rehabilitation Authority (Felcra).
It what has been hailed as a landmark decision, Justice Akhtar Tahir’s judgment delivered in the court in Temerloh yesterday ordered the Pahang Land and Mines Office to gazette the disputed land as Orang Asli customary rights land within a year.
The judge also ruled that Felcra’s projects in Bukit Rok and Kampung Ibam, in Bera, are illegal and should be removed, The Star reported today.
Thursday December 20, 2012
Court: Land belongs to orang asli
By ONG HAN SEAN
TEMERLOH: The High Court has ordered portions of a Malay reserve land encroaching into more than 2,000ha of Orang Asli customary land in the Bera district to be degazetted.
Revealed: More skeletons in the cupboard!
Lessons are held only 3 days a week but Kelantan Education Department director Hussain Awang said he was not aware of this.
1 The playground gets flooded every time it rains.
2 The education woes of children in the Pos Bihai villages are more than just the slapping incident.
3 The pupils of SK Bihai, numbering around 200, are only taught for three days in a schooling week, which in Kelantan is from Sundays to Thursdays. The teachers arrive only on Sunday and teach from Monday to Wednesday, and by Thursday noon, they are already preparing to go back home.
4 Even during days when the teachers are around, they often do not go to the classrooms. The parents also do not receive any report card for their children.
Parents of four SK Bihai pupils who were on Oct 23 slapped for not reciting the doa before having their lunch have given their statements to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).
This was when two officers from the MACC visited their Orang Asli village, Pos Bihai, last Tuesday following allegations that teachers of the school attempted to bribe them to drop their police report on the slapping.
Inaction over Orang Asli children incident reflects ineffectiveness — Gobind Singh Deo
DEC 15 — The failure to explain what action has been taken against the teacher who allegedly slapped three Orang Asli children for not reciting prayers in SK Bihai reflects serious weaknesses on part of the government in dealing with problems of this nature.
It is also regretful to note that the ministry has left this matter to the State Education Department. This is a very serious matter. Wee himself acknowledged this and it was the ministry which promised action in Parliament. It should therefore be them who must answer now. It would not be to their benefit, in the circumstances, to delegate the problem over to anyone else.
* Gobind Singh Deo is the MP for Puchong.
* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insider
Deputy Education Minister Wee Ka Siong said the case of the three Orang Asli children who in October were slapped for not reciting prayers has been referrred to the State Education Department (JPN).
Wee was asked for a progress update on the Oct 23 incident during a press conference at MCA hall, Kuala Lumpur today, following his announcement in Parliament last month that action was “under way”.
“I wish to say that every complaint that was filed to JPN or the Education Ministry will be acted upon as well as investigated,” he said today.
- 12 Dec 2012
- Metro Perak
- By IVAN LOH email@example.com Photos By SAIFUL BAHRI
Boost for community
State govt approves 11,600ha of land for orang asli folk
THE state government has approved about 11,600ha of land for the orang asli community to set up their settlements, said Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir.
“I have learned that although water supply has been made available to these villages, the water pressure is low.
“I will bring up the matter with the Perak Water Board so that the problem can be resolved fast,” he said.
Dr Zambry also thanked Pasir Salak MP Datuk Tajuddin Abdul Rahman, who was present at the luncheon, for immediately allocating funds for lampposts to be erected at the villages.
The Struggles of the Orang Asli and Other Minorities in Malaysia
This two-day seminar, which begins at 8.30am on Dec 7, will be held at the Grand Seasons Hotel here. Tickets are priced at RM50 for the public, RM30 for members of the Bar Council and RM15 for students.
For more information on the seminar, contact Christine Gomez, Officer, Bar Council, by telephone at 03-20502087 or email her at Christina@malaysianbar.org.my.
More than a month since their 12-year-old daughters were slapped by a teacher for not reciting a doa (Islamic prayer), lack of action has prompted three Orang Asli fathers today to make another three-hour journey from the Kelantan interior to lodge yet another police report.
This time, it is not only against the SK Bihai teacher who had slapped the children, but also several of his colleagues, for allegedly attempting to bribe the parents to withdraw their initial report lodged on Oct 24, 2012 at the Gua Musang police station.
According to the police report, read out to Malaysiakini by SK Bihai Parent Teacher Association deputy chairperson Arom Asir, the parents lodged the report to express their dissatisfaction.
Along Pandak, Hassan Achoi and Atar Pedik, in their report, claimed that the bribery attempt happened on Nov 7 at a PTA meeting.
“The teachers said if we withdrew the report, they will pay us RM250 per student, while the teacher who slapped them (name withheld) would top up RM50 per student making the total RM300 per student,”
Hospital holds mobile clinic for poor, Orang Asli
Read more: Hospital holds mobile clinic for poor, Orang Asli – Northern – New Straits Times http://www.nst.com.my/streets/northern/hospital-holds-mobile-clinic-for-poor-orang-asli-1.177536#ixzz2DZ1GfsYi
IF THIS TRUE, THAT IS GOOD NEWS FOR THE ORANG ASLI
‘Perak will have own flying doctor services beginning next year’
IPOH: Perak will have its own flying doctor services beginning next year to serve over 6,000 Orang Asli people living in the interiors of Perak, Pahang and Kelantan.
Read more: ‘Perak will have own flying doctor services beginning next year’ – Latest – New Straits Times http://www.nst.com.my/latest/perak-will-have-own-flying-doctor-services-beginning-next-year-1.175779#ixzz2D92Nsvvc
Give us power over our own land, says orang asli
Posted on 22 November 2012 – 05:30am
SUBANG JAYA (Nov 22, 2012): An orang asli spokesman from Tasik Chini, Pahang, proposed today for the community to be given more power to administer the ancestral lands which they have been calling ‘home’ for generations.
Tasik Chini action committee chairman Ismail Muhammad, speaking on behalf of some 5,000 orang asli from the Jakun tribe, said this could be done if the government enact a law which not only recognised the community’s right to their lands, but also to prevent “rampant destruction” of natural resources which surround the areas.
“As long as the power (to govern) is left in the hands of politicians, I do not see when there will be an end to (logging and mining) activities, which negatively affects our livelihood,” said Ismail.
“We can scream and shout to the heavens, but as long as there is no law (which gives power), nothing will change,” said Ismail during the launch of Transparency-International Malaysia (TI-M)’s documentary on Tasik Chini here yesterday.
The adverse impacts on the lives of the Orang Asli around Tasik Chini in Pahang, reflected in a documentary produced by Transparency International-Malaysia (TI-M), elicited demands from the viewers at a preview screening that it be widely distributed around the country.
Titled ‘Hacking at Harmony: Tasik Chini An Ecosystem on the Brink’, the documentary was screened at a hotel in Subang Jaya yesterday and among the audience were some 40 Orang Asli from Tasik Chini.
After the 37-minute video ended, they and representatives of NGOs present demanded that action be taken to protect the rights of the indigenous people and the environment.
A PAGE FROM THE RECENT PAST (2009)
Orang Asli in Perak and the 6th Bushido Code
by Augustine Anthony
I joked candidly that M. Kula, the Ipoh Barat Member of Parliament must have been an Orang Asli in his past life because of his concern and support for my work with the indigenous people of this country. He revved his 4WD on a precariously winding road in the secondary forest that was once ravished and ravaged by the greed of men and narrowly missed the ravine that would have taken all those in the vehicle into the river below.
“You need not be an Orang Asli headman in your past life”, M. Kula was quick with a reply without even looking at me. An instantaneous and poignant response expected of a man who confronts an assortment of rotting issues that emanates unwelcome stench in our midst.
I knew what he was trying to tell me.
The journey beyond that was a humourless exchange of thoughts about the promises and betrayal of Orang Asli for the last 52 years. Though living with physical independence but sadly chained and shackled with a mind of perpetual dependence.
There are no grand tales of the Orang Asli to tell, only the marginalization of this minority group of people. Walk the path of misery and the truth is scattered in all the lonely and desolate journeys into a forgotten world only known to the Orang Asli.
Our destination was a remote village, south of Perak. The inhabitants’ complaints were predictable. Their surrounding ancestral land and all their sources of livelihood are slowly but surely being removed from them, leaving behind a life of agony and uncertainty that promises skinned mother earth and its dust to bite.
A day after my visit to the remote village with M.Kula, I was forced by necessity and urgent appeal to be in another remote Orang Asli village, this time in Ulu Kampar.
One year after promises of road repairs and construction of a safer bridge that would make crossing the river leading to the Orang Asli village safe for children and women, all that remains now is a badly damaged bridge and a road leading to the village that invites danger and possibly death for any of its unlucky users.
The Orang Asli villagers’ complaint was that the loggers had moved in without a care and they now live in danger of land slides and dangerous earth movements which will put unnecessary fear during their foraging activities in the forests.
Why in a nutshell of our visit on the 1st Sunday of June 2009 and a day after? The answer lies 12 months before.
When the Pakatan Rakyat government was formed in 2008, one of the first things on the agenda was the formation of the Orang Asli Taskforce on Land Rights comprising, the majority of its members being the Orang Asli themselves.
Primarily the function and role of this taskforce is to move as quickly as possible to first identify the Orang Asli ancestral land and take all necessary steps to recognize, respect and protect these lands as Orang Asli ancestral land. Any forms of dealings, be it developments or otherwise, in these ancestral land would necessitate a free, prior and informed consent from the inhabitants of the particular parcel of land according to established international standards namely the United Nation Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People adopted by Malaysia in June 2006.
Ngeh Koo Ham, the then senior executive councillor and chairman of the taskforce went on to inform all the Orang Asli members of the taskforce that they are always welcome and free to use the conference halls at the State Secretariat Building anytime they needed to do so. This warm gesture led to meetings being conducted by the Orang Asli in one of the many conference halls from time to time.
It was a good feeling, watching the Orang Asli conducting meetings after meetings with many proposals and counter proposals on how best their ancestral land ought to be protected and preserved.
It was however a great feeling to silently appreciate an undeniable fact that the Pakatan Rakyat government under Ir. Nizar Jamaluddin was prepared to open up more decision making space for the Orang Asli thus promoting independence of thoughts and actions and giving hope for the Orang Asli to be partners in managing and sharing the riches of the state.
It was a near fairy tale beginning, one thought that would perpetuate into a “happily ever after story” but all that has come to an end by greed and betrayal of trust by some who are obsessed with their personal well being and interest and in the process corrupting their very thoughts and promises of service to the nation.
They conveniently forgot the urgent and apparent needs of those who are voiceless and dispossessed. The plight of the Orang Asli is only one of them.
It is most disheartening to note that since the beginning of the constitutional crisis in Perak, the members of Taskforce established by the Pakatan Rakyat government have not been invited to meet and discuss all the problems plaguing the Orang Asli.
And the irony of it all is the fact that, the Selangor government had formed its taskforce and it may be modelled after the Perak Taskforce.
The non-functioning of the Perak Taskforce had created a questionable confidence in the state government in its effective administration which ought to ensure the needed promotion of the well being of all, especially the minority, marginalized and dispossessed groups that require urgent attention.
The fundamental principle of good governance that requires a duty to consult as its integral and important component is ignored and this has created serious questions as to the present government’s ability to administer the state for the good of all.
The Supreme Court of Canada in the case of Haida Nation v. British Columbia (Minister of Forests),  3 S.C.R. 511, 2004 SCC 73 explains elaborately and sufficiently when the need for a duty to consult is triggered and why the need for such consultation process ought to happen in the first place.
The government’s duty to consult with Aboriginal peoples and accommodate their interests is grounded in the principle of the honour of the Crown, which must be understood generously. While the asserted but unproven Aboriginal rights and title are insufficiently specific for the honour of the Crown to mandate that the Crown act as a fiduciary, the Crown, acting honourably, cannot cavalierly run roughshod over Aboriginal interests where claims affecting these interests are being seriously pursued in the process of treaty negotiation and proof. The duty to consult and accommodate is part of a process of fair dealing and reconciliation that begins with the assertion of sovereignty and continues beyond formal claims resolution. The foundation of the duty in the Crown’s honour and the goal of reconciliation suggest that the duty arises when the Crown has knowledge, real or constructive, of the potential existence of the Aboriginal right or title and contemplates conduct that might adversely affect it. Consultation and accommodation before final claims resolution preserve the Aboriginal interest and are an essential corollary to the honourable process of reconciliation that s. 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982, demands.
And why honour?
Perhaps it will not be necessary for all our politicians to embark on the understanding of honour by slurping the succulent pages of the Bushido Code namely the 6th Bushido Code:-
“The sense of honour, a vivid consciousness of personal dignity and worth, characterized the samurai. He was born and bred to value the duties and privileges of his profession. Fear of disgrace hung like a sword over the head of every samurai……..” Nitobe Inazo
A Code of Honour?
Well, that will be too much to ask for from many of our local politicians consumed by pettiness and greed.
This entry was posted on Thursday, 11 June 2009, 7:04 am and is filed under Augustine Anthony, Orang Asli. You can follow any responses to this entry through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
Orang Asli in Perak and the 6th Bushido Code « Lim Kit Siang
He revved his 4WD on a precariously winding road in the secondary forest … cannot cavalierly run … 7:04 am and is filed under Augustine Anthony, Orang Asli.
blog.limkitsiang.com/2009/06/11/orang–asli-in-perak-and… – Cached
Deputy Education Minister Puad Zarkashi today urged the parents of the four slapped Orang Asli children to make a formal complaint over claims that teachers had attempted to bribe them to retract a police report on the matter.
“I have not received any report on the matter. I suggest that the dissatisfied parents lodge a complaint to the ministry so we can investigate. We don’t compromise on such matters.
“What (was alleged to have taken place) is like bribery. One cannot offer cash just like that. In fact, it’s like the teachers are admitting they are at fault.
“If this can be proven we will taken action against the teachers,” Puad (above, right) said.
He added that the slapping of students is not allowed by the ministry and disciplinary action can be taken.
He also urged the Kelantan Education Department to look into the parents’ claim.
SK Bihai Parent-Teacher Association deputy chairperson Arom Asir had told Malaysiakini that a group of teachers had approached the family of Hassan Achoi on Nov 7 with the RM300 offer.
The teachers sought to take the parents to the police station yesterday to withdraw the report, but the parents spurned the offer.
|9:17AM Nov 20, 2012|
Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo wants the education minister and the attorney-general to explain why no action has been taken against the teacher who slapped four Orang Asli children for not reciting the doa (Islamic prayer).
Such delays allow abuses to take place, Gobind said, such as the alleged attempts by teachers to pay the families of each student RM300 if they withdraw their police report.
“This is what happens when there is delay on part of the authorities in taking action. Investigations in this case would be complicated.
“The fact that the Ministry of Education has also intervened and promised action should be further reason for action to be taken swiftly,” Gobind said in a statement.
He added that failure to take action in this simple matter was “embarrassing” for the police and Education Ministry and exemplified why society’s faith in the system is waning.
“The education minister and attorney-general must speak up and explain what action has been taken until now and if none, why has there been a delay?” he said.
The family of the non-Muslim Orang Asli girls slapped for not reciting a doa (Islamic prayer) at school last month has been offered cash to retract their police report, it is claimed.
According to SK Bihai Parent Teacher Association deputy chairperson Arom Asir, the family of Hassan Achoi was approached on Nov 7 and offered RM300 to retract the police report.
“Along Hassan, the brother of one of the girls, had contacted me on Thursday (Nov 8) to inform me and ask for my advice.
“He said that he was approached after a PTA meeting on Wednesday (Nov 7), and that the offer was RM300 for each of the students slapped,” he said when met in Kuala Lumpur on Nov 9.
He was in the capital city to attend a conference on Orang Asli rights.
Malaysiakini was unable to contact Along as his village, Pos Bihai, is located far in the interiors of Gua Musang, near the Perak-Kelantan border, and does not have telephone coverage.
SK Bihai is an exclusively Orang Asli school.
Give them their ‘Space’!
editor3 | Nov 09, 2012
Just take a good look around us and the environment that we are living in. We are so comfortable living with all the basic needs that we need for our daily living. Each and every human being are entitled to have their basic needs. Look at the birds of the air and the animals on land and sea. Each living thing moves freely in its own surroundings and enjoys its environment. All they ever need is a space that they are comfortable to move in.
We too, those who are living in urban areas, in fact do enjoy the space that we are all living in, don’t we? We who are living in urban areas with all the comfortable surroundings around us, do you think that we can leave our space and settle living in a forest where there are no modern infrastructures and transportation? It will be quite difficult for us to settle in a forest because we have not been living there since birth. We will definitely find it difficult to adapt our lifestyle living in a forest because we are not at all used to the natural surroundings that surrounds us.
But to some, the forest is their “paradise.” It is a place that they call their “home.” The forest is the dwelling place to some of these people from different tribes who I address as the Orang Asli, which literally means ”original people”, “natural people” or “aboriginal people” in Malay, is a generic Malaysian term used officially for indigenous or known as Orang Asall in Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia. Officially, there are 18 Orang Asli tribes, categorised under three main groups according to their different languages and customs. They are the Semang or Negrito generally confined to the northern portion of the Peninsula. Senoi residing in the central region and Proto-Malay or Aboriginal Malay confined in the southern region. This is just a small info added to my article.
Read the rest of the article:
***Sumber Berita Dari: http://mediaperak.net/2012/11/09/give-them-their-space/
Free Malaysia Today
‘Govt failed to protect Orang Asli rights’
The public must rise up and pressure the government into solving the woes of the downtrodden Orang Asli, says the Bar Council.
KUALA LUMPUR: The state and federal governments have failed to protect the interests of the Orang Asli in Malaysia, the Bar Council said today.
Bar Council treasurer Steven Thiru said the government had violated the Orang Asli community’s land rights in particular.
“You see exploitation and deprivation of land in both East and West Malaysia.
“Either the authorities – the state government – or private bodies have been grabbing, unlawfully acquiring ancestral land,” said Thiru, who is also co-chairman of the Bar Council committee on Orang Asli rights.
Tension is increasing
National Human Rights Society (Hakam) president Abdul Rashid Ismail said that tension was increasing among the Orang Asli community due to the amount of land being taken away from them.
“Land is becoming more scarce, and we see urban areas edging ever nearer to Orang Asli settlements. For example, Damansara Perdana used to have an Orang Asli settlement there, but now it’s like a concrete jungle.
“Most of the Orang Asli who originally lived there were either relocated, or were forced to abandon the lifestyle they have known for centuries and purchase houses,” he said.
Rashid said that aside from land rights, the indigenous community was also deprived of the basic right to education.
“According to a Suhakam report in 2010, there were 17,9842 Orang Asli children who were not attending school. This is a significant number considering the population of the indigenous community,” he said.
The four SK Bihai Year 6 students were slapped on Oct 23, prompting their fathers to make a three-hour journey from their village to the Gua Musang police station to lodge a report.
The school is located in the Kelantan interiors, close to the Kelantan-Perak border, and has exclusively non-Muslim Orang Asli students.
Section 17 of the Aboriginal Peoples Act 1954 states that no Orang Asli child should be obliged to receive religious teachings, without prior consent from the parents.
Section 17(3) states that any person contravening this faces a fine not exceeding RM500.
Action is “under way” against the teacher who slapped four 12-year-old non-Muslim Orang Asli pupils last month for allegedly not reciting a ‘doa’ (Islamic prayer) before lunch.
Deputy Education Minister Wee Ka Siong, while winding-up the committee stage debate on Budget 2013 yesterday, however, fell short of spelling out exactly what these actions are.
“Investigations were made and yes, it had happened and actions are under way (dalam tindakan),” he said.
Replying to a matter raised by Gobind Singh Deo (DAP-Puchong), he however noted that the ministry was empowered to take disciplinary action.
“We can use prevailing procedure to take action, including investigate (the matter) and give warnings…
Fathol Zaman Bukhari
It may not be the landmark case of the year but the decision by the Tapah magistrate court to acquit and discharge four Orang Asli over the shooting of a tiger in Bukit Tapah Forest Reserve in 2010 was of significance to the Semai community. The four, Yok Mat Bah Chong, 48, Yok Rayau Yok Senian, 50, Yok Kalong Bah Papee, 51, and Hassan Bah Ong, 33, were charged under Section 64A of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972 (Amended 1976 and 1988) which carries a fine of RM15,000 or a five-year jail sentence or both.
The incident took place in the forest reserve near Sungkai on February 4, 2010. According to Yok Mat, they shot the tiger to save their friend, Yok Meneh Yok Din, who was attacked by the animal while out foraging in the forest. The prosecution, adduced Magistrate Fairuz Adiba Ismail, had failed to prove a prima facie case against the four who hailed from different villages in Sungkai.
Although the Tapah court decision on Thursday, October 11 may not be in the same league as the Sagong Tasi case, its significance can never be dismissed. It is, after all, a vindication of sorts for a community long oppressed by the very people entrusted to care for them. It is poetic justice for the four who were doing what their forefathers had been doing before them – eking out a living by foraging in the jungles. The vast jungle tracts, which are slowly but surely shrinking due to human encroachments, are fair game for the powerful and the moneyed, on one side, and the weak and the poor, on the other. It is akin to the confrontation between the Red Indians and the white settlers in 19th century USA.
The fact that the quartet was defended by the likeable legal team of Augustine Anthony and Amani William Hunt Abdullah, better known as Bah Tony, a part Semai, lends credence to its importance. Augustine had argued that there had been contradictions in the evidence produced in court. The shotgun, belonging to a Rela personnel, referred to in the ballistic report was different from the one seized from the accused. A Veterinary Services Department officer had told the court that she was the one who performed the autopsy on the dead tiger but an earlier report said that a Wildlife Department officer did the examination. The Rela officer who testified on behalf of the prosecution could not even differentiate one shotgun from another.
“The contradictions were simply too glaring for a conviction,” said Augustine. “Therefore, the court was justified in dismissing the four.”
The victory may be long overdue but more problems are in the offing. The latest being the slapping of Orang Asli students by a Malay teacher for failing to recite the doa during school assembly.
Wild Asia Heroes: Tijah Yok Chopil
Wild Asia nominates Tijah Yok Chopil, an indigenous woman of the Semai tribe as our fourth Wild Asia Hero. Tijah has devoted her life to empowering and uniting the once-scattered Orang Asli’s of Peninsular Malaysia. Her dedication led to the historic 3,000-strong protest at Putrajaya in March this year. Jules Ong is honoured to meet this formidable woman at her village in Bidor, Perak.
Written by Jules Ong on 6 Sep 2010
Tijah Yok Chopil still remembers her first day of school in 1976. The traumatic events that enfolded that day are forever etched in her memory. Her reflections of those events and subsequent experiences with the outside world changed her to who she was to become today.
That day, when Tijah was eight, the Orang Asli children of Kampung Chang, Perak were bussed out of their settlement to be schooled in a national school in Bidor town, some 30 minutes away.
“When we got down from the bus all the other kids looked at us like we were aliens. They were afraid of us and we were afraid of them. Then they jeered and teased us. We felt so ashamed,” recalls Tijah who is now in her early 40s.
Subsequent negative experiences with people outside of her community made her ask why her people are so alienated in the country that recognised them as the Original People.
“I realised the answer is not to run and hide away… but to stand our ground, to unite to empower ourselves and to explain to the outside world who we are.”
With 18 diverse ethnic groups numbering 150,000, Tijah has the challenge of empowering and uniting the Orang Asli to speak in one voice. She started with the people closest to her – her family and community. At 17, she started teaching her siblings and neighbours’ kids in her house to read and write. Due to the many negative experiences in school, and having no money to buy food or books, many Orang Asli children dropped out of school. But through sheer effort and determination, Tijah managed to continue schooling despite having to help her mother farm and tap rubber to support her nine siblings when her father died when she was only 12.
As a result of her classes, which eventually included adults, there is almost no one in her village who is illiterate today. Tijah also began to engage in discussions with the Orang Asli leaders on the problems besetting the community. But she realised soon enough that the menfolk could not accept a young, vocal woman who speaks her mind.
“I found the men who claimed to be our leaders were not really engaging with the community or finding creative ways to solve our problems. So instead of waiting for them, I decided to start my own group. I decided to engage with the womenfolk and we called ourselves Kumpulan Ibu-Ibu Kampung Chang (Kampung Chang’s Women’s Group).
“After many years, the young people who had been my students and the womenfolk became my strong allies. They helped me organise the community when there are land incursions or when we need to voice our demands to the government.”
The men eventually joined the women in the village and together they changed the name of the group to Sinui Pai Nanek Sengik (SPNS), which means New Life, One Heart in 1995. Through this organisation, they ran classes and workshops for the community on activities ranging from weaving baskets to paralegal training on land rights.
From those humble beginnings, the SPNS model spread to other villages. Over the years it became a network linking five states in Peninsular Malaysia and SPNS evolved to what is now known as the Village Network of Peninsular Malaysia Orang Asli. (Jaringan Kampung Orang Asli Semenanjung Malaysia).
The Village Network has over the years become a powerful force in voicing for Orang Asli rights on their cultural identity, which is intrinsically tied to the land. Through their collective efforts, they managed to stave off several threats of land incursions into their native customary territories.
Their latest struggle is to protest against the new land policy that was approved without consultation with the Orang Asli grassroots by the National Land Council last December.
The title of the policy – “Policy of Awarding Land Titles” is in itself misleading and offensive to the Orang Asli, says Tijah.
Read more in
Wild Asia Heroes: Tijah Yok Chopil – Wild Asia
www.wildasia.org/main.cfm/library/Tijah_Chopil – Cached
Tuesday November 3, 2009
Tijah’s efforts to lift her people
By SHAUN HO
KUALA LUMPUR: Since she was 18, Tijah Yok Chopil has been helping orang asli children in her village learn subjects like mathematics by relating them with everyday life issues.
Twenty three years later, Tijah runs a literacy programme for over 60 orang asli children at two centres in Perak and one in Negri Sembilan. The programme helps the children learn to read, write and count.
“This programme will give them a sense of self-confidence,” Tijah said of the Pendidikan Celik Huruf programme which is run by the group, Sinui Pai Nanek Sengi.
The group is a network of orang asli settlements across Perak that was founded by Tijah.
Sinui Pai Nanek Sengi means “new life, one heart” in Semai language.
Yesterday, Tijah received a cheque for RM50,000 from the ECM Libra Foundation to run the programme.The foundation also pledged two more donations of RM50,000 in the next two years, in addition to three donations of RM10,000 annually to organise educational trips.
Former Inspector-General of Police Tun Haniff Omar presented the cheque to Tijah on behalf of the foundation.
Tijah’s efforts to lift her people – Nation | The Star Onlinethestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2009/11/3/nation/… – Cached
AUGUSTINE ANTHONY APPOINTED LEGAL ADVISOR ON WORLD ABORIGINAL DAY 2008 (PERAK)
Kampung Chang Sungei Gepai in Bidor was transformed into a carnival atmosphere as the orang asli folks celebrated World Aboriginal Day 2008 in a way best befits them with color and pomp. The celebration which began on 07.08.08 was officiated today by Perak Senior State Executive Councilor Dato’ Ngeh Koo Ham who is head of Finance, Infrastructure & Public Utilities, Energy, Water and Non-Islamic Affairs.
Traditional dances, songs, music and food added to the galore and spirit of brotherhood which we partook. There was plenty of drama and magical moments as ceremonially dressed women and men presented a two-hour extravaganza traditional show which culminated with inspiring speeches by Dato’ Ngeh Koo Ham, Bah Azmi (Chairman of JKOAP), Tijah Yok Chopil (its Secretary), and Augustine Anthony (head of Orang Asli Affairs BCHRC).
It was during lunch when we had a brain storming session with Dato’ Ngeh Koo Ham who acknowledged our achievements over the Gopeng logging issue. He then informed that he wanted to commission a task-force headed by Augustine Anthony to assist him in matters pertaining to orang asli matters in the state.
Simultaneously, in the simple ceremony he has also appointed Augustine as his personal legal advisor. Also present at the ceremony were Jerald Joseph of KOMAS, Dr. Colins Nicholas of COAC, Tijah Yok Chopil, Bah Azmi, Bah Ahha of JKOAP, me and scores of Tok Batins from 6 other states. This is indeed an honour to Perak Legal Aid and Human Rights Sub-committee as Perak would be the first State in the country to have such an Orang Asli Task-force commissioned by the State. Hence we intend to form a pro-active committee comprising of those who are foremost authorities in orang asli issues. The list looks impressive and I am sure that everyone in the Commission will work very hard to come up with strategies to help save the Orang Asli people, their land and their culture.
M. Gokoolaram Naidu
Perak Legal Aid Centre and Human Rights Sub-Committee
perakbar.blogspot.com/2008/08/augustine–anthony… – Cached
Wednesday, 25 June 2008 08:00 M. Gokoolaram Naidu
We have waited for 51 years and we are still being victimized,” said Tijah Yok Chopil, an equally depressed Orang Asli activitist and Secretary of Jaringan Kampung Orang Asli Perak.
Perak Legal Aid Centre and Human Rights Committee