Saturday, December 21, 2013

Kg Tai Lee eviction issue: Residents decide to appeal to Court of Appeal



Media Statement by M. Kula Segaran, MP for Ipoh Barat and DAP National Vice Chairman in Ipoh on 22nd December 2013

Kg Tai Lee eviction issue: Residents decide to appeal to Court of Appeal. 



What started as a village for the poor to live and work in the city in the early 50's had over the time become one of the largest villages around Ipoh.

The land owner had rented the nearly 6 acres of land to people who had built their own houses and the land owner collected land rental.

The village, which is located on private land within the Ipoh City area, is now comprised of 50 houses and 75 families who are the third generation Kg Tai Lee residents.

But what was once a remote village has over the time become an important area for commercial development. Thus in 1997 , the land owner issued notices to evict all the residents. The land owner in the notice asserted that the residents were illegal occupiers who had entered the land without consent and permission.

Contrary to this, the residents defence was that they were legal tenants paying a ground rental of between RM 5 to RM 10 a month. And that in 1995,  on the encouragement of the land lord,  the tenants expended monies to renovate their houses as such they have a 30 year lease to occupy the land commencing from 1995 as provided for by the National Land Code.

The Ipoh High Court heard the case for over 10 days and finally on the 12 of December 2013 , the Court delivered its decision on the issue of over 50 families residing in Kg. Tai Lee as follows:-

 The court agreed that the residents were tenants and not squatters as alleged by the land owner. Further they are entitled to a 30 years lease from 1995 which means they have another 15 years right to stay on the land. The Judge Lee Siew Seng found that as compensation for them to move out now, each resident would be paid a compensation of RM 10,000 and they need to vacate by April 2014.

Lawyer N. Selvam and I met up with the residents last night at Kg. Tai Lee. After a lengthy discussion with questions posed by the residents,  it was decided the residents will appeal to the Court of Appeal.

The residents feel the compensation is too low and to move out by April is an impossible task as the residents have no other houses to move to. 

The DAP has been involved with this lower income group of residents for over 3 decades. We will provide the necessary legal and other assistance right to the end of this matter.

When the Pakatan Rakyat government was controlling Perak in 2008, we discovered that adjoining this Kg. Tai Le area, there is a vacant 4 acres of land. We suggested that this 4 acre land be set aside for the residents for the building of flats or the land be sub divided and be given to the residents. But Pakatan Rakyat government could not implement this idea as the government was taken over by the present BN Government. 

Just before the 2008 general election, the residents were informed by the Ipoh Land Office that they would be relocated to Pusing, but this has remained an empty election promise till today.

There were also repeated assurances that the residents would be given state housing lots, but all these too have never materialised.

Sometime on Jan 3, 2010, there was a gotong-royong event organised by the state government with the Kg Tai Lee residents. At the gotong-royong, the Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Zambry Abdul Kadir ordered the local council of Ipoh (MBI) to find a solution to settle the issue faced by the residents. To date although numerous meetings have taken place "a win win" situation has not materialised.

At yesterday's meeting, the residents have also requested for a meeting with the Perak Mentri Besar to discuss and find a solution to this longstanding issue of the people.



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