Friday, July 3, 2009

Are pigs more valuable than humans? - Malaysiakini

Does DAP care more for pigs than humans?

This is the question posed by Kampung Buah Pala villagers in Penang who are now counting the days to the deadline for their eviction from the area which has been earmarked for development.

kg buah pala 020709 villagers protest 02Describing it as 'double standards', village residents' association chairperson M Sugumaran chided the DAP-led state government's response to their predicament.

"Is this rule of law?" he thundered when speaking to reporters. "Is this justice, fairness and equality regardless of race and religion?"

"Are pigs more valuable... more important than humans? Are we worse than pigs?" he added.

He was referring to Kedah DAP's decision yesterday to pull out from the state Pakatan Rakyat coalition following a series of misunderstandings, the latest being the demolition of an illegal abattoir for pigs.

'War will erupt on Aug 2'

This morning, some 100 villagers, including women and children, had gathered at the entrance of the village to prevent representatives of the developer - Nusmetro Venture (P) Sdn Bhd - from entering the area.

kg buah pala 020709 bailiff stick court orderTempers flared when they spotted Numesto executive Gary Ho Yuen Kong arriving with court officials and policemen at about 11.30am.

A small light strike force unit was also deployed to prevent any untoward incidents while the bailiffs posted the writ.

The villagers started to shout at Ho as he entered the village. Calm was restored by the police after Ho left the area.

The villagers however refused to receive the notices of the writ, forcing the bailiffs to paste them outside their houses.

The writ gives a two-week deadline for the villagers to vacate their houses to pave the way for the lucrative Oasis development project.

kg buah pala 020709 developer representativesThe state government, which has come under intense fire over this issue, has already requested the developer to extend the grace period until Aug 2, in an effort to find an amicable solution.

Sugumaran warned the developer that the villagers would not surrender their homes at any cost.

"Our resistance today would have given the developer a clue that we not going to give up our land. It's going to be a war come Aug 2, unless the state government can end our woes," he said.

Whose side are you on?

Joining the fray, Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) secretary-general S Arutchelvan said everyone wants to know which side state government leaders will be when the developer's bulldozers roll in.

psm visit to kg pala 020709 02"Will they be on the villagers' side defending the people's rights against the rampaging developer?

"Or will they be on the developer's side protecting capitalist interests?" he asked after visiting the area.

Arutchelvan said Kampung Buah Pala was an organised traditional Indian village that must be preserved by the authorities as a state heritage.

"It is not a squatter settlement as claimed. "It's a living cultural and economically vibrant village of 200 years," he added.

Indicating that the state government cannot hide behind the Federal Court ruling to wash its hands over the crisis, he said Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng should find a political solution.