Press Statment 9 August 2019
In conjunction with the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM) wishes to repeat our request to the federal government to conduct ground visits in order to understand in detail how monoculture plantations in Sarawak have caused deforestation and the violations of the native customary rights (NCR). We first put this request forward during the launching of our publication, The Land We Lost – Native customary rights and monoculture plantations in Sarawak, on July 21.
This publication stresses on how we must understand the context of large monoculture plantations in Sarawak accurately. First, they involve deforestation. Second, they are a post-logging development, a result of the depletion in timber resources, caused by indiscriminate logging conducted for more than two decades. Third, they involve NCR violations. Fourth, the excessive size of the plantations does matter, along with the manner and context in which the projects are developed, typically by corporations. As such, we continue to be supportive towards any effort to protect the interests of smallholders all over the country. Fifth, the Licence for Planted Forests (LPF) under the jurisdiction of the Sarawak Forests Department, of which 285,520 hectares are under oil palm cultivation, in principle, is the permit for the cultivation of pulp and paper and timber trees. In 2017, the size of LPF areas stood at 2.8 million hectares, larger than the size of oil palm cultivation in Sarawak, which according to the data from the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB), stood at 1.5 million hectares.Read more
Press Release 21 July 2019
Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM) would like to announce the launch of our publication – ‘The Land We Lost – Native customary rights and monoculture plantations in Sarawak’, the outcome of our research on how large pulp and paper, timber tree and oil palm plantations have caused deforestation, river pollution and the violations of native customary rights (NCR) in Sarawak.
This publication stresses on the importance of understanding the context of large monoculture plantations in Sarawak accurately, as it entails two destructive factors that cannot be denied in any way. First, it involves the destruction of forests, rivers and the environment. This is in fact a post-logging development, which began in the 1990s, as a result of the depletion in natural timber resources caused by the excessive logging conducted between the 1980s and 1990s. Second, it involves the violations of the NCR. Both factors are caused by various systemic weaknesses in governance, policy and law, which have failed to ensure sustainable forestry management and provide land tenure security for the NCR.Read more
Kenyataan Akhbar 21 Julai 2019
Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM) ingin mengumumkan pelancaran penerbitan The Land We Lost – Native customary rights and monoculture plantations in Sarawak (Tanah Kami yang Hilang – Hak tanah adat dan perladangan monokultur di Sarawak), hasil penyelidikan kami tentang bagaimana perladangan besar kayu kertas, kayu balak dan sawit, telah menyebabkan kemusnahan hutan, pencemaran sungai dan pencabulan hak tanah adat (NCR) di Sarawak.
Penerbitan ini menegaskan perlunya kita memahami konteks perladangan monokultur besar di Sarawak dengan tepat, kerana ianya melibatkan dua buah faktor kemusnahan yang tidak boleh disangkal sama sekali. Pertama, ia telah menyebabkan kemusnahan hutan, sungai dan alam sekitar. Ini sebenarnya merupakan sebuah perkembangan pasca-pembalakan, bermula pada lewat 1990an, setelah sumber kayu balak semakin berkurangan akibat dari pembalakan tidak terkawal yang dilakukan pada 1980an dan 1990an. Kedua, ia telah melibatkan pencabulan hak tanah adat. Dua buah faktor ini berlaku akibat dari pelbagai kelemahan sistemik dari sudut kepemerintahan, polisi dan perundangan yang gagal memastikan pengurusan hutan yang lestari dan memberikan jaminan pegangan tanah terhadap NCR.Read more
Meeting between communities from Marudi and Tinjar with a few Sarawak State Assemblypersons and SAM. Picture: SAM
Press Statement 08 October 2018
In Miri today, SAM arranged for two groups of indigenous communities from Marudi and Tinjar, Baram, to meet Sarawak state assemblypersons with the aim of halting the violations of their native customary rights (NCR) by oil palm plantation projects.Read more
Malaysiakini June 21, 2016
This briefing paper was prepared in March 2014 in time for the Parliament sitting. It was designed for law and policy makers on the need to align all statutory provisions on matters related to land, forestry, conservation and indigenous peoples in Peninsular Malaysia with judicial decisions on indigenous customary land rights.
SAM prepared a briefing paper for the March 2014 Parliament sitting for law and policy makers. This paper discussed the Forest Law Enforcement Governance and Trade - Voluntary Partnership Agreement (FLEGT-VPA). The paper served as a background for law and policy makers on indigenous customary land rights and the issuance of MYTLAS licence prior to the signing of the VPA, among others.
SAM's Position Paper - Legal implications of the failure in instituting policy and legislative reforms
SAM's position paper on the legal implications in the failure to institute policy and legislative reforms in relation to customary land rights was endorsed by Jaringan Orang Asal dan NGO Tentang Isu-Isu Hutan / Network of Indigenous Peoples and Non-Governmental Organisations on Forest Issues (JOANGOHutan), Jaringan Orang Asal SeMalaysia / The Indigenous Peoples’ Network of Malaysia (JOAS), Jaringan Tanah Hak Adat Bangsa Asal Sarawak / The Sarawak Native Customary Land Rights Network (TAHABAS), Sarawak Indigenous Lawyers Association (SILA), Save Rivers Network and Dr. Yogeswaran Subramaniam, Advocate & Solicitor, High Court of Malaya.
This paper was submitted to the European Union during SAM's lobby trip to Europe in 2013.