High handed tactic used to evict Kampung Semangat squatters

At around 10.30 Sunday morning, about 70 squatter villagers in Kampung Semangat, Tampoi, here, demonstrated to demand for a fair compensation and against the unethical use of force and threat to evict them by an unidentified group of people.

Out of the 400 families who have been staying there for more than two decades, some 220 families have left after being constantly harassed and threatened by the unidentified group of people leaving about 180 families who have refused to bow to the high handed eviction tactic used.

A section of the villagers present at the peaceful protest

Besides the residential area, the village also has a senior citizen home caring for some 50 aged people for the last 13 years, a village community hall and a small temple.

During a short speech, Kempas people’s complaint centre coordinator and Johor PAS youth chief, Suhaizan Kaiat, said, the villagers are appealing to the mentri besar of Johor, Abdul Ghani Othman, to step in and assist the villagers to resolve the issue.

The villagers have refused to deal with the unidentified group and want to have direct negotiation with the land owner to seek for a fairer compensation, he added.

Villagers protesting at the project site

Incidentally, the 156 hectares of prime land has been bought over by Danga Bay Sdn. Bhd., which has been alleged to have intimate link to the Johor state government.

Answering questions from the press, Kampung Semangat Action Committee Chairperson, Wong Yong Pow, 60, reiterated the main points stated by Johor PAS youth chief, Suhaizan Kaiat and commented that the eviction notice which they received did not mention the name of the notice server’s client and the contact number stated is not even in service.

A resident, Yong Juang Heng, 59, told Citizen Journalists Malaysia that the residents received the eviction notice pasted on their house wall sometime in September, 2011.

He said, an unidentified group has been coming to the village to offer compensation ranging from RM2,000 to RM8,000.

Some families were said to have reluctantly accepted and left, leaving some 180 families who stayed back to seek for a fairer compensation.

Animal lover, Won King Sang, 67, who has been operating an animal shelter for abandoned dogs and cats in the village over the last 10 years said, the villagers here are not unreasonable people, what they are asking is to be fairly compensated.

Kadir Razak, 55, another resident who has been staying in the village for over 20 years echoed Won’s statement in total agreement.

Remains of some of the houses that have been demolished

Citizen Journalists Malaysia has been informed that the villagers have made a police report at 2.30pm yesterday at the Kempas police station against a group of unidentified people who trespass the village at about 11.00 yesterday morning with 5 bulldozers.

During yesterday morning commotion, the villagers demanded from the unidentified group of people to produce the court order or land office eviction order that authourised their action and they failed to do so.

The unidentified group of people was seen leaving the site in a hurry with their bulldozers  after noticing a group of journalists arriving at the scene at about 12.30pm to cover the commotion.


Video by: Christine Leong, Citizen Journalists Malaysia