KUALA LUMPUR, April 4 — Human Resource Minister M. Kulasegaran today accused the Pahang state government of evicting farmers out of spite, choosing only to protect those it favours.
The Ipoh Barat MP said the Barisan Nasional (BN) state government has evicted 50 farmers from lands on which they have operated for several decades, in Kampung Terla in Cameron Highlands.
Pointing out that this would result in the farmers running foul of their bank loans, he said in a statement today that he hoped for a win-win solution for all involved.
“The state government’s tactic of issuing permanent land titles to some farmers while restricting others to annually renewable TOLs is transparently a move to favour their supporters and punish those who decline to vote for them.
“This is an action that disincentivises the industrious and reward the politically correct. It is a recipe for stunting our agricultural sector,” Kulasegaran said.
He said that he has already met the farmers, and claimed that there is a climate of fear that more will be targeted for eviction.
“With the evictions in Kampung Terla, the state government is impoverishing a sector of our agriculture that is productive and earns vital foreign exchange,” Kulasegaran said.
He said that the issue has already been raised in Cabinet and called on the Pahang government to conduct a comprehensive study on the eviction issue, which he said stemmed from allegations of river pollution in the area.