State Minister Awang Tengah Ali Hassan said even in situations when the government acquired private land it was used for public infrastructure development.
MUKAH: The Sarawak Minister of Resource Planning and Environmental II Awang Tengah Ali Hasan criticised opposition allegations that the state government had seized land as being lies to stir hatred among the people.
He said the claims, which were a part of the opposition campaign for the Balingian by-election, were solely aimed at confusing the people and to garner votes.
“All kinds of accusations have been hurled at the government. Why would we seize land from the people when in fact it is the government which gives land to them,” he said during a ceremony to distribute offer letters for state land in Kampung Lintang Balingian, about 60 kilometres from here.
He stressed that even in situations when the government acquired private land it was used for public infrastructure development such as roads and schools.
Awang Tengah also lashed out at the opposition’s tactic of drawing similarities regarding the situations which led to the Balingian and Kajang, Selangor by-elections.
He said the Balingian by-election was a result of its incumbent and former Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud stepping down to make way for new leadership.
Whereas the Kajang by-election came about due to PKR leader Anwar Ibrahim’s attempt to wrest power from the Selangor Menteri Besar by forcing the state constituency’s incumbent Lee Chin Cheh to resign.
Meanwhile, 196 Balingian residents who had applied for state land for agricultural purposes received their offer letters during the ceremony.