by S. Arutchelvan
No justification can be accepted for the action done by Dato Ng Kek Kiong, the boss of Mega 9 in forcefully and brutally demolishing 10 houses in which 4 people were still occupying on 31st. October 2013.
On the same day; 19 people among them, villagers, activists and elected State Assemblymen were arrested for trying to save Kampung Hakka. The attempt to save one portion of the Kampung failed as Mega 9 successfully, heartlessly and without mercy encroach into the 100 years village, using the might of the police and its money to execute a court order which was premature.
4 families lost their homes of more than 5 decades, their belongings destroyed as the Mega 9 Bulldozers ripped into their wooden houses. I went to the village immediately after my release only to find a ruined village. It looked as if a strong storm has hit the village, the only difference was this was not a natural disaster but man-made. It is always difficult to hear adults cry like babies, to hear the cries of protest, the despair and hopelessness which surrounds the air. “We have lost everything. My father built this house. They did not even remove our furniture, they are real bastards……. ”
There is no justification or justice for the “sins” committed by Mega 9 or Dato Ng. Dato Ng was supposed to be involved in various guilds and associations. Sadly he was also an active member of FuiChui Associations and Hakka Association. This is a Hakka village. One banner read, “Hakka makan Hakka” (Hakka eats Hakka). Many villagers have told me that Dato Ng only want to pay them peanuts, and then uses all his connection and money to throw people out. Many people have left but this does not justify his actions on the remaining few.
Why must he destroy a hundred years village? Why does he not want to discuss a proper settlement with the elected representatives of the villagers, why must he lie that these people are illegal squatters when they have lived there for many years, even before he bought the land, why must he in the first place develop that piece of land even knowing that there are poor people living in it? Dato Ng the so called nice man is no different than the other Developers. He just wants to develop the land and make money out of it.
The Mega 9 action on 31st October cannot be accepted especially when it is carried out by a leader of the Hakka Community. Dato Ng claims that he has made many donations, given land to temple and other charity yet I find him and his company’s decision to flatten the house on 31 October as arrogant, inconsistent and lacks basic humanity.
It would have taken just less than 3 million for this rich Towkey to permanently settle this issue, but he went on to use his money and might to carry on this forced eviction. I asked a senior police officer how much were the police paid to assist the demolition, he just smiled and told me to refer it to his boss. Every demolition, money is paid to people carrying out eviction. The money could have been better spend by compensating the villagers a better deal.
Until the very end, the people were trying all means to discuss, communicate and settle this issue amicably, but Mega 9 choose the brutal way, the use of force rather than dialogue.
Mega 9 should not feel in cloud nine after what they have done. The people are more than determined to fight all the way. They have lost everything and have been humiliated. They have nothing now to lose except their dignity and the desire to fight back.
* S. Arutchelvan is Secretary General of Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM). He was arrested twice during Kg Hakka forced eviction.