IPOH: Dec 31, 2008 By CHAN LI LEEN
The Pakatan Rakyat-led Perak government has given out 11 permanent land titles to residents of new villages in the state despite the objections of the Federal Government.
State senior executive councillor Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham said the first batch of applicants received their land titles from Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin at a ceremony in Gerik on Tuesday.
They were from Kampung Baru Kuala Rui.
The 11 are the first batch of 47,000 lot owners in 134 new villages and 102,000 lot owners in 349 planned villages eligible for automatic conversion of their titles from leasehold to freehold.
Ngeh told reporters here on Wednesday that the conversion of land titles had been carried out legally, and noted that the state’s panel of at least 10 lawyers had vetted the entire process.
“Everything we have done is legal and, with due respect, we would like to note that the Deputy Prime Minister (Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak) had erred in his legal opinion,” he added.
Ngeh revealed that titles to 10 other plots of 1.6ha under a cluster-farming scheme in Tanjung Rimbun had been given out to Malay farmers.
“Again, the state government would like to stress that it does not practise racial policies. Everything it does is for the rakyat (people),” he said.
Ngeh added that 320 plots covering 598.8ha would be given out under the scheme.
Later, at a function to present aid to 400 poor and orphaned children, Nizar said as far as the state was concerned, it had not broken any laws in giving out the titles.