KOTA KINABALU: The Land and Survey Department has planned to issue Communal Title involving 90,000 acres in nine districts in the state next year. They are Pitas, Kota Marudu, Sook, Keningau, Nabawan, Tongod, Beluran, Kinabatangan, Tambunan and Sipitang. Its director, Datuk Osman Jamal, disclosed yesterday the issuance of the Communal Title is part of the programs under Bumiputera Lab that aimed to fight for native’s rights and to improve their living standards through land ownership.
For the first time this year, the Land and Survey Department issued Communal Title to villagers who are living ‘In-Situ’ in a big scale. It will protect the interest of the Sabah natives, overcome the issues involving native customary rights (NCR) and solve overlapping land applications.
The villagers’ names will be listed in the Communal Title as beneficiary and it can be inherited. However, Communal Title cannot be mortgaged,?he said at the launching of the Land and Survey Department’s new building, Wisma Tanah dan Ukur here yesterday.
Head of State Tun Ahmadshah Abdullah launched the building. Also present at the ceremony were Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman and Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department Datuk Nasir Sakaran.According to Osman, three Communal Titles have been issued in 2010 with two of them in Nabawan and another one in Lalampas, Tongod district. The period of Communal Title to be issued is between two and five months.
Meanwhile, the Bumiputera Lab under the Land and Survey Department will be forming a data bank for about 140,000 hectares of idle native title and for 80,000 hectares of native reserve land. Osman added the Land and Survey Department is also planning to set up a Native Land Unit to ensure the success of the programs under the Bumiputera Lab. For a start, the Federal Natural Resources and Environment Ministry has prepared a cabinet paper to get a RM25 million allocation to assist the Land and Survey Department to conduct surveys for the Communal Title. Osman also announced that the department has added another two assistant directors to focus on three main departments namely land, surveys and development.
Meanwhile, Musa said under the Sabah Land Information System (SALIS), the state government would be setting up an Idle Native Land Bank to facilitate the implementing agencies such as Sabah Land Development Board and Sabah Rubber Industry Board to plan the development of idle land in a commercial way, together with the land owners. Musa urged the Land and Survey Department to step up its enforcement against state land encroachment and illegal land excavation, sand and stone mining.
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