Nobody wants to live in a squatter area. But, what choice does this Iban community have? They need to migrate to the urban areas in search of better employment and to earn a living to support their family either in Miri or those that choose to stay back in their respective longhouses.
They need a place to stay and they take all the risk to build a home near the sea. Despite the bad erosion and now the impounding waves are getting nearer their homes.
Last weekend saw their homes being invaded by waves and their living room being flooded by sea water.
There must be a fast solution to these issues. Building retaining walls, relocating the squatters to a new place, giving them option to purchase new homes under Suruhanjaya Perumahan Nasional Berhad, etc. are all the available options.
To these causes, it will be great to see the various Iban-based NGOs in Miri to come forward and assist the Miri City Council to address this issues that affect the majority Iban residents of Kampung Api in Lutong.