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Friday, December 17, 2010

Police move in to end beach resort stand-off

LANGKAWI - Things are beginning to go back to normal at the Beach Garden Resort here after police finally stepped in and ordered a group of people who had laid "siege" to the resort to disperse or face the consequences.

Police arrived on Monday night and ordered the group to disperse besides directing them to remove the plastic tape they had used to seal off the resort in Pantai Chenang.

They also detained two men who caused a commotion when they tried to prevent workers from reconnecting water supply to the resort.

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However, the duo were released the next day after their statements were recorded.

Resort general manager Wolfgang Sauer yesterday expressed relief and thanked the New Straits Times for highlighting the problems faced by the resort as it helped in getting police to put an end to the chaos.

"The police finally put an end to the stand-off on Monday night, five days after the group disrupted our operations. We now have a peace treaty and the problem should not recur.

"The situation has finally been brought under control by the police, and water supply has been restored. Our guests and those of the island in general will be able to enjoy their holidays without fear of any further disturbance."

Sauer said the group had also assured the management that they would clear piles of red earth that had been dumped at the resort's entry and exit points since last Wednesday.

It was reported in the NST that a group of local residents, identified as members and sympathisers of seven families who co-own the plot of land where the resort stands, had resorted to disrupting operations at the resort by unloading truckloads of red earth at the entry and exit points.

They also sealed off the resort by putting plastic tape around the perimeter before harassing and threatening guests, workers, suppliers and neighbouring resorts who tried to help out by giving water to the resort.

Guests staying at the resort were in fear for their safety and the problem was compounded when local authorities here failed to act decisively to put an end to the group's blatant disregard for the law.

The incident was sparked off when members of the family, which owned the land, got into a dispute over whether the lease agreement with the resort, which has been operating on the land for the past 20 years, should be extended for another 12 years.

Family members who disagreed with the lease agreement decided to take matters into their own hands even though the resort management had successfully obtained an interim injunction from the High Court to prevent the disputing parties from entering the resort or disrupting its operations.

NST ..

TB : Need to settle the dispute. Its quite a shame to outside world.

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