By Khairunnisa Zulkifli
The Konvensyen Tanah Rizab Melayu 2019 organized by UiTM Shah Alam was held in Dewan Agung Tuanku Canselor, UiTM Shah Alam on 28th February 2019.
Tanah Rizab Melayu or Malay Reserved Land is not an uncommon term in Malaysia, no. Forgotten? Maybe. Neglected? Depends.
Tanah Rizab Melayu is stated in the 7 Wasiat Raja-Raja Melayu as the second point:
“Kami isytiharkan dan kami simpan untuk kami dan kami benarkan kamu isytihar dan simpan untuk anak cucu kamu, selain gunung-ganang, tasik dan hutan simpan, Tanah Simpanan Melayu sehingga nisbah 50 peraturs, selebihnya kamu rebutlah bersama-sama kaum lain.”
Tanah Rizab Melayu being stated in the 7 Wasiat Raja-Raja Melayu is for the purpose of avoiding Tanah Rizab Melayu to be transacted to a non-Melayu and avoiding any dealings or businesses of Tanah Rizab Melayu by/to a non-Melayu.
There are several important terms that make up the understanding of Tanah Rizab Melayu. The first is ‘Melayu’. Melayu is defined differently according to different enactments which are: Kelantan 1930, Kedah 1931, Perlis 1935, Johor 1936, Terengganu 1941 and Negeri Melayu Bersekutu (NMB) Bab 142. Other points strengthening a Melayu is Islam as religion and Bahasa Melayu as the main language. That completes the definition of ‘Melayu’. While ‘Malayan’ is defined as another.
Other than that, to own and hold a Tanah Rizab Melayu, one should comply with 3 elements of a Syarikat Melayu as stated in Seksyen 2, ERM (NMB Bab 142). Including that, there are several other restrictions as stated in the ERM.
The chart above displays TRM Land Area in the whole of Malaysia by years. Statistically, states with the most land area of TRM are first Kelantan followed by Perak and Kedah. While Terengganu is a little special having Tanah Rizab Melayu and also Tanah Pegangan Melayu. However, the total land size of TRM by year in Malaysia as tabulated above does not even comply the 50% as stated in the 7 Wasiat Raja-Raja Melayu.
In realizing and developing TRM, several parties discussed, researched and brought up plans. These are such as the suggestion of a Lembaga Amanah Tanah Rizab Melayu by Dr Hasrol Haffiz. The Lembaga was suggested to be formed to protect and develop TRM. This suggestion of a Lembaga Amanah Tanah Rizab Melayu was already sent before but rejected. Despite the rejection, they are trying again.
In reality, protecting and developing TRM is a big challenge. The main factors were found for the decrease of TRM in Malaysia: cancellation of TRM status by land owners, land acquisition by PBN and land development.
Land replacement was brought up as one of the main reasons of the decreasing number as stated by Datuk Dr Nik Mohd Zain. Land acquisition of TRM lands were not being replaced like it should have as stated in Perkara 89 of Perlembagaan Persekutuan.
There were a few issues on TRM that were brought up and highlighted during the convention. Prof. Dr. Ismail Omar mentioned the highest voted issues relating to TRM were marketability and the low value of TRM land. Other than that, restrictions on TRM, low value of TRM land and lack of demand were barriers for development on a TRM land.
Prof. Hadi from UiTM highlighted on a ‘belief system’ implanted in most of Malaysians’ minds of a perception that a TRM land is synonym to a low value. Hence in order to eliminate this perception, Malaysia needs a revolution. He also concerned on that the main objective of developers should not be solely on profit gaining but also to cooperate together in improvising TRM lands and Malaysia as a whole.
In supporting this, Prof. Dr. Ismail also highlighted a few points in achieving the same direction particularly for TRM in Malaysia. The market value of TRM lands needs to be redefined and groups related to TRM that were already established should also be checked back and monitored on performances and actions. Establishing a Bank Wakaf was suggested by Datuk Dr. Nik.
For more information on the Konvensyen Tanah Rizab Melayu (KTRM), visit www.trmuitm.wixsite.com/website to download the E-Book KTRM.
ERM = Enakmen Rizab Melayu
NMB = Negeri-Negeri Melayu Bersekutu
PBN = Pihak Berkuasa Negeri
TRM = Tanah Rizab Melayu