News: Cameron Highlands Landslides Due to Housing, Commercial Developments

Nov 26, 2018


The recent landslides in Cameron Highlands are not due to farming activities, but to housing and commercial building developments, most of which do not adhere to the Hillside and Highland Areas Development Planning, said Tanah Rata assemblyman Chiong Yoke Kong.

Last month, three Myanmar nationals were reportedly found buried on their rumah kongsi at Batu 49, in Kuala Terla following a landslide.

“If we look at the locations of the landslides of late, farming activities were not the main cause,” he said.

“Since the 2014 Ops Gading, land encroachment activities have stopped while housing and commercial building developments at hillsides increased.”

During Ops Gading, action was taken against 1,891ha out of 2,258ha of illegal farm land, reported The Star.

“No farmers have dared cleared land illegally since then,” said Chiong, while noting that there were over 2,000 farmers at the highlands.

“If there are still encroachment activities, the state and local authorities must be investigated first as they hold power over the land.”

He also questioned the state government over its promise to award Temporary Occupation License (TOL) to illegal farmers who have toiled under 2ha of land for more than 10 years.

Of the 1,153 applications for TOL received by the Cameron Highlands District and Land Office, only 197 were approved while some 327 are still pending.

“But according to a survey by my office, none of the farmers have received the TOL,” said Chiong. “Relocation efforts of farms also failed to be executed by the state and a lot of small farmers still do not have the TOL as promised.”

Meanwhile, around 629 applications were rejected as they were near a retention area in Sungai Terla.

“Others were rejected because they were non-Malays who have applied for Malay Reserve land,” he said.

“Those rejected have been advised to re-apply for the TOL in areas that do not go against the requirements.”


Image source: The Star


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Elcoln Leong
Real Estate Negotiator
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