Photos by Kris Khaira and another
2100: As time runs out, a few dozen High Chaparral villagers have gathered outside the house of the Adun for Seri Delima, R S N Rayer, located off Jalan Masjid Negeri/Green Lane.
Some of the frustrated villagers call for his resignation. “We were betrayed by the BN government previously,” says one of them. “We voted for the Pakatan government, hoping they could bring about change. But we have been let down again.”
No one emerges from the house. The lights inside are off though the porch with cars parked in it is lit.
Several of the villagers are being interviewed by reporters. One of them claims that the village land could have been federal instead of state land. He says that when the Housing Trust was dissolved in the 1970s, “Vested Crown” land should have gone to the federal government.
The villagers are now hoping to meet the CM on Monday but they are not sure if he will be around.
One of the journalists suggests that Guan Eng’s hands could be tied as the land was alienated to the Penang State Government Officers Cooperative and these same civil servants could make life difficult for him if the state government attempts to block the “Oasis” property development project.
But several observers are wondering why the Chief Minister himself has not yet visited the village to express solidarity.
According to spokespersons for the residents, the alienation of the land was effected a few weeks after the Pakatan administration took over in March 2008 although the agreement was entered into in 2005.
Back in the village, the residents are preparing for a wedding ceremony tomorrow morning.
One of them, Tharmaraj, whose brother is getting married, says his family has lived in the area since the time of his great-grandmother.
The residents are now engaging the services of lawyer Darshan Singh in a last-ditch attempt to seek a legal remedy. Dozens of them have signed a couple of sheets of paper agreeing to allow him to act on their behalf.