Sultan scolds firm for ignoring the law

  • Nation
  • Sunday, 16 Feb 2003

CAMERON HIGHLANDS: The Sultan of Pahang, Sultan Ahmad Shah, has reprimanded a company for levelling a highland here for vegetable farming, saying “nobody is more powerful than the laws of the country.” 

He said Syarikat Deng Seng Enterprise Sdn Bhd had clearly defied the law by using heavy machinery to flatten the land while it was only authorised to use light machinery. 

The company, he said, had made two mistakes.  

He said firstly, it assumed that the local authorities would understand that what methods it used would reduce soil erosion and secondly it had acted without permission. 

“You never discuss with the authorities, it’s only your assumption. Nobody is above the law, including me,” he told a briefing by the company’s director Kwang Keh Chong at the site yesterday. 

Present at the briefing were Pahang Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob, senior state government officials and Cameron Highlands District Officer Haron Abdul Kader. 

Earth levelling work at the former site of Blue Valley Estate created a controversy when the company ignored two stop work orders issued by the district land office.  

The company’s action caught the attention of the Prime Minister who criticised the damage done. 

Following Dr Mahathir’s statement, Andan announced an immediate freeze on all new development projects in Cameron Highlands. 

Kwang, in his briefing to the Sultan, said his company was given approval by the district office to clear and develop the eight-hectare land using light earth-moving equipment. 

He, however, said that after using the small machinery for a month, the progress was slow. 

“Once they started using heavy machines, work was progressing faster and erosion was better controlled. 

The contractor decided to continue using heavy machinery assuming that the authorities would understand the reasons for it. – Bernama  

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