Monday, November 26, 2007

Protect those who own land

The Star
by Roger Tan

I REFER to the report 'E-Tanah more efficient', (The Star, Nov 21) where it was reported that amendments to the National Land Code would be tabled at the next Parliament session.

The report quoted Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak as saying, after chairing the National Land Council meeting, that one of the amendments would include extending the e-Tanah system to the entire peninsula, following its successful implementation in Penang last month.

On July 24 ‘Government to review land code Bar Council calls for amendment’, (The Star, July 25), the Bar Council handed over a memorandum titled Prevention and Protection against Fraudulent Land Transactions, to the Natural Resources and Environment Minister, Datuk Seri Azmi Khalid. A copy of the memorandum was also later extended to the Attorney-General’s Chambers.

In the memorandum, the Bar Council has proposed amendments to section 340(3) and (4) and section 187B of the National Land Code. These amendments, if passed, would legislatively reverse the unjust decision of Adorna Properties v Boonsom Boonyanit delivered by the Federal Court in 2000.

For the past six years, the Adorna Properties decision has “wreaked havoc” on every landowner in this country. It not only puts a landowner at risk of losing his property to fraudsters and forgers, but also when the landowner loses his land to these crooks, he loses everything without any compensation or remedy.

The Government, therefore, owes every citizen an immediate duty to protect and preserve his property from deprivation.

The Bar Council calls on the Government to ensure that the coming amendments to the National Land Code will contain provisions to come to grips with these serious ramifications of the Adorna Properties decision in order to undo the injustices perpetuated by this case for the last six years.

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