Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hassan (third left) present the land title under Section 18 Sarawak Land Code at Kem Putra Sentosa, Sematan. Photo: Mohd Alif Noni

SEMATAN: Statewide survey works carried out by the state government has become significantly more efficient, says Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan.

He said the increased efficiency was due to the two-stage approach taken.

“The first stage is surveying the perimeter of the land and gazetting it under Section 6 of the Sarawak Land Code as a Native Communal (Agriculture) Reserve.

“The second stage is surveying individual land lots followed by issuance of land titles under Section 18 of the Sarawak Land Code,” he said.

He said this in his speech during the handover ceremony of land titles under Section 18 of the Sarawak Land Code to landowners in Kampung Pueh, here on Wednesday (July 8).

According to Awang Tengah, the new methods were more efficient when the survey work of approximately 934,288 hectares or 2.3 million acres of land was successfully implemented in the first phase with 753,456 hectares or 1.8 million acres already gazetted.

This means that with the new method, an average of 103,809 hectares of Native Customary Rights (NCR) lands are surveyed each year.

“We were able to increase the NCR land survey output by nearly 20 folds compared to the old method,” he added.

He said the previous method was found to be less efficient when only 260,000 hectares or 642,460 acres of NCR land were successfully surveyed in approximately 50 years between the 1960s until 2010.

“This means that on average, only 5,200 hectares of NCR land can be surveyed a year,” he told.

In this regard, he said if there were still some villages that had not yet been surveyed, the residents could forward their applications to the Land and Survey Department Sarawak.

“If the people are sincere in their demands, we will help them the best we can,” he added.