Sarawak community leaders urged to help Native Court clear backlog of nearly 6,000 cases

SIBU: The Sarawak Native Court is facing a backlog of close to 6,000 cases at the District and Residen Bumiputra Courts, says Deputy Minister in the Premier’s Department (Native Customs and Law) Jefferson Jamit Unyat (pic).

"Despite our achievements which have been satisfactory so far, I understand there are still many more cases that have not yet been heard and decided by the District Officers and Magistrates from court headquarters in Kota Samarahan," he said here on Friday (May 5).

After his visit to the Sibu division Bumiputra Court, he said 5,987 or 35% of all cases filed under the District and Residen Bumiputra Courts throughout the state were still pending.

"Some involve land compensation and the court is treating these as priority at this time.

"These cases need to be resolved by community leaders, including those in the Miri division," he said.

Jefferson also revealed that more than 2,800 cases in the Chief or Penghulu Courts and Superior Chief or Pemanca Courts throughout the state also remain unresolved.

This includes 284 cases in Sibu division, he added in calling on all community leaders involved to help the courts bring these outstanding matters to a conclusion.

Under the Sarawak Bumiputera Court Ordinance 1992, community and tribal leaders appointed by the government are given statutory duties, responsibilities and legislative powers to resolve customs violations and customs-based civil cases such as native customary land disputes.

They include those with the position of Temenggong, Pemanca, Penghulu, Iban longhouse chieftains and Bidayuh village heads.

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