Thursday, January 17, 2008




A local entrepreneur is seeking an Order of Mandamus from the High Court here to compel the Director of Land Survey and the Registrar of Land Titles to process his applications for agriculture land in Lahad Datu and issue the title deeds to him.

In his application for judicial review, Abdul Rahman Mohd Noor is also seeking a court order to declare that he is the lawful and legal owner of the 30 parcels of land measuring 305 acres at Kampung Dewata, Lahad Datu.

He filed the application through counsel Marcel Jude Joseph, naming the Director of Land and Survey and the Registrar of Land Titles as the respondents.

The case came up for hearing before High Court Judge Datuk Clement Skinner in Chambers yesterday. The respondents were represented by Senior State Counsel Zaleha Rose Pandin from the State Attorney-General Chambers.

Met after the proceedings yesterday, Marcel said the court put off case to Feb 26 this year for resumption of the hearing.

Abdul Rahman, who is also seeking damages and costs from the respondents in his application, was present in court yesterday.

In his application filed last year, Abdul Rahman said that in 1980 a survey permit was issued by the district surveyor in Lahad Datu in respect of the various parcels of land located at Kampung Dewata.

However, the survey plan of the land application contained several shortcomings and on Jan 24, 1980 the district surveyor informed the Sabah Survey services about the problems.

Abdul Rahman claimed that one, Ahmad Padtiatai was the holder of a Power of Attorney dated Feb 5, 1980 in respect of the 30 persons who applied for the said land. On Feb 19 that year Ahmad entered into an agreement with him whereby he purchased 305 acres from Ahmad.

According to him, on Feb 19, 1980 a substitute Power of Attorney was signed and granted by Ahmad to him in respect of the land applications.

He said that after paying the premium on March 30,1980 he was issued a temporary occupation license by the land office the next day.

On July 2, 1987 after due enquiries as to why the title documents for the land were still not issued to him, Abdul Rahman said he wrote to the district surveyor in Lahad Datu.

In his reply, district surveyor Wong Kooi said the department was seeking the advice from the Director of Land and Survey as the private surveyor engaged to survey the land had since ceased to practice and his whereabouts was unknown.

On July 30, 2003 a meeting was held with Director of Land and Survey, said Abdul Rahman, adding that he had already taken possession of the 305 acres of land and has since cultivated it.

Another meeting was held on April 1, 2005 between all the relevant parties chaired by the Director of Land and Survey but until today there is still no decision or conclusion on the matter, he said.