Al Jazeera 101 East programme on Astro Channel 513 was showing a documentary on the proposed 12 dams in Sarawak last night.
The documentary mainly touched on the details of Taib’s family Cahya Mata Sarawak (CMS) and its businesses, a short interview carried with James Jemut Masing, the Sarawak Land Development Minister, social activist Dr John Brian Anthony of Dayak Baru, Abdul Aziz Hussain – Managing Director of Sarawak Energy and the people affected by proposed dams development.
The most interesting part to watch is of course, the interview with James Jemut Masing where good questions were asked by the interviewer, Fauziah Ibrahim specifically on the topics such as political and capital cronyism, conflict of interest, corruption, environmental issues and abuse of power by who else but Pek Mo lah!
Let me quote the opening statement by the journalist:
“For decades, Asia political dynasties have been leased to political cronyism. Here in the Malaysian state of Sarawak, the political and economic scene has been dominated for 30 years by one man, Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud.“
How’s that for an introduction? Watch for yourself the rest of the documentary to look at the connections between big business and government as major developments change the face of Sarawak forever.
Al Jazeera is carrying below article at its webpage.
The Bakun dam project has displaced more than 10,000 indigenous people [EPA]
The Malaysian state of Sarawak plans to build 12 new hydro-electric dams along the state’s waterways, saying the projects will create jobs, provide cheap renewable energy and meet the demands of future industrialisation.
The dams are supposed to push the total generating capacity in the state to 7,000MW by 2020, an increase of more than 600 per cent from the current capacity.
There are plans to expand the aluminium-smelting industry in the state which will need the planned output.
But critics question the sustainability of the project.
They are concerned that the dams will destroy the environment and heritage sites, displace tens of thousands of local indigenous people and are unnecessary for a region that already has more electricity than it needs.
Opponents also say that the projects are magnets for corruption, enriching the private coffers of those in power.
This week on 101 East we talk to those in favour and against Sarawak’s proposed new dams.
This episode of 101 East airs from Thursday, March 19, 2009 at the following times GMT:
Thursday: 1230, 1930; Friday: 0300, 0630; Saturday: 1400; Sunday: 0530; Monday: 0130; Tuesday: 1030; Wednesday: 0730, 1430.
ps: I cringed when Masing said ‘..and I believe the voters of Sarawak are very intelligent group of people’. Why that sounds more like a sarcastic reply than a sincere one?
pss: It’s fun to watch how Masing squirmed in his seat, tackling the questions.
psss: I love how the reporter pronounced the CM’s name. Abdyul Tahyibbb bin Mahmmood.
Tags: 101 East, 12 Proposed Dams, Abdul Taib Mahmud, Al Jazeera, Cahya Mata Sarawak, CMS, Documentary, Dr. John Brian Anthony, James Jemut Masing, Political Cronyism, Sarawak, The Fight for Power, Video