Archive for the ‘Bruno Manser Fund’ Category

Newton’s third law of motion states that “every action has an equal and opposite reaction”. This is one law that has found many practical uses in science, but in politics, Taib Mahmud has mastered it like no one else has. Taib Mahmud has used this before and in the last GE13, we saw it being used once again.

Taib Mahmud’s interpretation of Newton’s 3rd law should be seen in the context of his political strategy. Incite the Sarawakians somehow, so that they vote for him en-masse. No where else in the country is the Sarawakian Bumiputra so united and committed behind the Barisan National Sarawak as he/she is in Sarawak. None of the “kedaerahan” politics that pervades much of Borneo states even seems to make a beginning in Sarawak. In fact, the Sarawakian voter has conferred Taib with the title of “Peh Moh”or White hair just like White Rajah Brooke – something that no other politician has managed to earn.

Trust me, this is not just paranoia. I have observed Taib for many years and I can say this with confidence that his every recent statement and action indicates the launch of one more edition of his proven mantra. Do something that unites the Sarawakian Native vote. But how? Here’s where Newton’s 3rd law comes in: Say something that targets the Malayans or Putrajaya; get media to hyper-react and come to their defense. Gain advantage with the state’s Sarawakians. In short: “Push out the Malayans. Pull in the Sarawakians”. Some would say “very smart”. So what if it is “divisive”. Politics in Sarawak never bothered about things like that!

Let’s look at what all Taib Mahmud has been busy with recently.

Taib’s various interviews with the media is interpreted by naive political observers as being an attempt at reaching out to the natives in Sarawak. This bunch of naive political observers thought this was Taib’s steps towards remaining as chief minister for Sarawak forever and to make sure UMNO never enters Sarawak. But Taib has already figured out that UMNO and Barisan National has become too weak in Malaya and depend too much on Sarawak to remain in power in Putrajaya. This is the time for re-asserting power in his home state by winning handsomely. His focus is only on Sarawak right now. He has enough trouble in his home state. The economy is slowing down (yes yes… unbiased articles to understand this fact) and he is getting panned for his state’s Human Development Index figures and corruption. If he now loses Sarawak, he loses all chances to remain as chief minister and UMNO will step foot in Sarawak and hence create another Sabah senario, every Sarawakian knows this. On the other hand, if he wins Sarawak again in the coming Sarawak state election which is expected within the next 2 years, he is without doubt going to be the foremost chief minister who kept the Malayan colonist out from Sarawak, notwithstanding what Taib Mahmud or others feel.

Let’s analyze what Taib told the press recently. Taib Mahmud charged that the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) does not “deserve” his cooperation in potential graft investigations as they have not been upfront with him. Taib said he was not afraid of being investigated by MACC as long as he was being treated fairly. “Up to you. They want to victimise me, let them. As long as they are fair I am not scared”. “They don’t deserve my cooperation because they have been quite naughty.” The interview provided Taib the platform to announce that he wouldn’t apologize to the Putrajaya control MACC because he hadn’t done anything wrong. Sounds strange assuming he was trying to appease the Feds? Imagine this. Taib talking to the Feds in their language and telling them on their faces that he wasn’t going to cooperate? What were the Feds expected to do? Howl with anger and pass judgments that Taib was guilty! What is the media expected to do? Scream untouchable Taib. That’s what it did! And what about the opposition? Of course, they all showed how untouchable Taib was. This is exactly what Taib wanted! All this has panned out so beautifully for him. Why? Because what will Sarawakian do when they hear so much media, opposition and criticism of Taib? They will react like Newton said they would. They will ring fence Taib. They will swear to themselves and to each other that they will get their “protector” elected. Brilliant, Taib Mahmud!

Consider also the Malay-language Bible “Alkitab” row. Malaysiakini reported Taib as saying “It was I who talked to the prime minister. I said to him that it was a stupid idea to stamp serial numbers. I told him it should be stopped and he said ‘yes I agree and I’ll put a stop to it’. So he went and stopped the serial numbers. Now there’s no more of this nonsense.” Again, naive observers may have wondered why Taib wasn’t seizing the opportunity to curry favor with the Muslims. But no, Taib’s objective was the same. He was interested in making a statement to the Christian Bumiputras. Again….push the Malayan fanatics….maybe even become a hate figure amongst them…..and earn the votes of the Christian Bumiputras! Brilliant, no? The hearts of Taib’s Sarawak Christians would have swelled with pride. Now that’s our leader!

Taib is said to be fantastic with PR. I agree. He will use every bit of available opportunity to further gain from Newton’s law. The recent Lahad Datu Intrusion is and example where he said the setting up of Royal Commission of Inquiry to investigate Lahad Datu intrusion in Sabah is a good move to find out the truth about what happened to avoid the government from being accused of creating the conflict. Taib cannot publicly use this issue to whip up support for himself, but in secret ceramah’s in Sarawak, Taib must be telling the Sarwakians – see what happens if we surrender our rights to the Malayans, let me handle this, only I can stop Putrajaya from stealing our rights! Give me your vote and I will make sure Sarawak is safe from Putrajaya!

The real truth is that all fair’s in love and war and politics. And no one can grudge Taib his political strategy. But it would help to know what one is getting into. No one expects Taib not to rely on his Dayak vote bank. There is nothing wrong in that. But one must recognize the downside of such a strategy. For the country and for his own party. Taib may want to ask why UMNO is dying to step foot in Sarawak and why Putrajaya wants him to retire as chief minister….the answer to that may make him wiser. Wiser than merely knowing Newton’s laws….

Cynicism often creates blind spots which distort vision. Of late Sabah political scenario seems to be hugely afflicted by this malady which is going undiagnosed. Heart-warming developments emerging from various parts of Sabah are being clouded by the dust of allegations of corruption and malfeasance of gargantuan proportions in governance.

It was reported widely that Switzerland’s Attorney General has opened a criminal investigation into the country’s largest bank, UBS AG, over suspected money laundering of about S$38 trillion which includes US90 million of timber corruption proceeds from Sabah. The case against UBS was opened on August 29, following a criminal complaint by the Bruno Manser Fund over the bank’s close ties with Sabah Chief Minister Musa Aman. The existence of the investigation was confirmed on August 29 by the Office of the Attorney General in the Swiss capital, Bern.

The Bruno Manser Fund accuses “Musa Aman and his nominees” of laundering more than US$90 million of corruption proceeds from the tropical timber business in Sabah, Borneo, through a number of UBS bank accounts in Hong Kong. The Bruno Manser Fund alleges that Musa Aman “has personally benefited from the large-scale logging” of these rainforests near the Danum Valley. The Swiss government reportedly said that it was ready to freeze Musa’s accounts in Switzerland if the Malaysian authority made a request for legal assistance.

These allegations however sounds very Dan Brown, singling in on the conspiracy theories.

One such positive development comes from this whole accusation. Sabah Forestry Department director Sam Manan is an internationally celebrated forest scientist. In his current assignment as adviser on forestry to Sabah chief minister Musa Aman, Sam has been focusing on good forest practices in the state. And he has an interesting story to tell. Despite being hit by accusations of rampant illegal logging of its forest, the state is all set to post an increase of about 20 percent of Sabah’s total land area under the totally protected area (TPAS) reserves reaching 1.3 million hectares exceeding even the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) standard of 10%. By all yardsticks, this is not only unprecedented but phenomenal too.

How has this miracle become possible? Sam explains it very succinctly, “Perseverance and desire at the top.” Musa Aman has been consistent in his approach to reduce the dependence on timber revenue soon than later, ever since taking over the state as chief minister in 2003 and this was his agenda. The forest revenue is about RM150 million a year today as opposed to RM500 million to RM1 billion in the past. His objective is simple: to ensure that the forests are given a chance to recover.

And according to Sam, the money Bruno Manser Fund is alleging about is a US$90 million “nest egg” purportedly derived from widescale illegal logging activities in Sabah. This amount of US$90 million , if indeed true, would mean that not less that one million m3 of timber have been illegally felled. That represents plundering of at least 20,000 hectres (50,000 acres) of well-stocked forest. This scale of logging would then represent 50% of the timber produced from natural forest in 2011 or about 30% of Sabah’s timber production in 2010.

Sounds rather ridiculous and far fetched this whole US90 million story.

If anything, a badly logged well-stocked forest of 20,000ha would have been easily detected by satellites and attracted the attention of NGOs, environmentalists and the communities living nearby. Besides, the enormity of the alleged extent of illegal felling [1 million m3] could not have escaped the attention of the world. So, no way could such acts be committed and passed without notice. Also, if 50% of the annual production of timber from Sabah was alleged to be illegal, world markets especially sensitive ones like Europe, North America and Japan would have long ago stopped buying timber from Sabah. This enormous economic and financial implication would have been so harmful to the state as a whole and the state budget could have gone topsy-turvy.

Musa Aman worked overtime with the forestry to improve on good forest practices and continue to attract the attention of certifying bodies and NGOs, who want to be partners and to assist Sabah in obtaining veritable and certifiable good governance. Under his leadership, SFM [sustainable forest management] had improved by leaps and bounds. Short-term licences that caused tremendous damage to the environment were being drastically phased out and Sabah’s forest management credibility is now at its highest.Sabah now has an open-book philosophy whereby, logging and forest management areas are all open to third party and NGO scrutiny. Currently at least 800,000ha of Sabah’s forests are partially or fully certified under various internationally recognised system such as FSC (Forest Stewardship Council), MTCS (Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme) and PEFC (Pan European Forest Scheme). This included the 250,000ha of fully certified and 150,000ha of partially certified forest areas under the Sabah Foundation.

In fact, many more forest areas are being earmarked for certification as Sabah has set 2014 as the year for all long-term licensed areas to be fully certified.The process of certification means independent third party is on the ground auditing to assess credibility. Musa has created model forest centre and ensured that the forest in Sabah will never be “raped” like in the past by unscrupulous people. At the same time, there has been a consistent effort to educate everyone involve in the timber industry about good forest practices without disturbing the forest.This endeavor, carried out silently, is about to bear fruits now, an indication that Sabah’s forest are well run. And the spill-over effect is evident by the wildlife corridor linking Maliau Basin, Imbak Canyon to Danum/Ulu Segama and the re-classification of Ulu Segama (130,000ha) to total protected status.

As The Duke of Cambridge Prince William and Lady Catherine Middleton prepares for a visit to Danum Valley on the 15th of September, a testament to their longstanding interest in conservation, we should perhaps see this as an indication that the rumours of deforestation and illegal logging is not true. Why would Musa allow the Royal couple into Sabah if the home to some of the last remaining areas of tropical rainforest in South East Asia were indeed in dire straits?

In fact, Sabah has been uniquely placed in Malaysia’s context. Given its good forest practices, pressure on forest is intense. Timber revenue was a major source of livelihood in absence of industrialisation. Perhaps Sabah stands out as a paradox in the Malaysia Shining story. Still the state has been consistently growing at the rate of over 8 percent, one of the highest in the country. There is no doubt that much of this growth comes from the state spending on social welfare schemes and building up of infrastructure.

By economic standards, Sabah virtually offers an inverted model of growth inconsistent with the overall growth narrative. Musa aman has been making all-out efforts to inject buoyancy in rural market by improving agriculture and tourism. Perhaps he seems to be aware of his handicap that the timber from the forest is getting too scarce and priced to be given for industrial growth. That is why he has been insisting on reducing the dependence on timber to save the forest for future generations. Similarly he turns to be an environmentalist when it comes to allotment of mining rights in and around Maliau Basin. Sabah is firm that no mining activities should take place in first class forest reserves and protected areas such as the Maliau Basin in the south central part of the state. “No mining can be allowed in Maliau Basin,” he told Datuk Lim Keng Yaik when requested him to open coal mining to give fillip to growth. And then the Sabah government’s decision to bar any development on the seafront totalling 1,555ha from Tanjung Aru to Likas Bay through the Land Ordinance (Amendment) 2012 Bill, approved by the state assembly in July 2012, was a significant and bold move, and motivated by the need to protect the marine ecosystem.

On the face of it, Sabah appears to be posting a growth which is not sustainable if one believes in prescriptions of neoliberal economists. But there are enough straws in the wind to suggest that Sabah is on the cusp of defying this theory and evolve a new model which may be far more inclusive and environment-friendly than the existing models. If Musa Aman’s growth story proves to be true, this innovative model is bound to fuel an intense political and economic debate in the country.

So the allegations are therefore baseless and made with bad intention to discredit the sacrifices made by Musa Aman’s state government to achieve good forest governance and SFM [sustainable forest management] in the shortest time possible, despite the economic financial and social challenges.

by Joe Fernandez
Guest Columnist

ANALYSIS Malaysia Agreement or no Malaysia Agreement, Sarawak or Sabah/Labuan for that matter, cannot step outside the bounds with the Federal Government. Putrajaya belongs as much to the two Malaysian states in Borneo as to Peninsular Malaysia.

At a lower level, the Federal Government presides over the individual sultanates, states and territories in Peninsular Malaysia.

Five on-going issues, some simmering for long, have pitted the Sarawak state government in a head-long clash against the Federal Government. It’s anybody’s guess how Putrajaya will bring the recalcitrant Taib Mahmud regime to heel. Surely, the Joseph Pairin Kitingan administration (1985 – 1994) in Sabah is the mother of all precedents!

Now (drumroll) for the latest of the five issues viz. Native status, followed by immigration, heads of federal depts, NCR land and Taib’s long-promised retirement as Chief Minister.

In the latest move, the Sarawak National Registration Department’s (NRD) willful defiance of an 18 Nov 2009 policy circular, [ref: PM( R)11880/A/072/3 Jld 5] by the Chief Secretary to the Government is likely to inflame passions and further infuriate the Chinese and other non-Native communities in Sarawak against the state government.

Not that Taib cares anyway despite the drubbing he received in the urban and Chinese seats during last year’s state elections.

A Sarawakian non-Native married to a Bidayuh lady has come forward to scream in the local media, anonymously, that the Sarawak NRD does not recognise the Chief Secretary’s circular which rules that children born in Sabah and Sarawak of only one non-Native parent can henceforth be registered “by administration” as Natives. The only reason that this is happening is because recruitments for federal departments in Sarawak, unlike in Sabah, are done through the Sarawak Federal Public Services Commission.
The Sarawak NRD, according to Sarawakian, advised him to get confirmation from the Native Court and the Majlis Adat Istiadat Sarawak (MAIS) on his children’s Native status. To add insult to injury, The Sarawak NRD reiterated that it doesn’t recognise the Chief Secretary’s said circular as valid.

MAIS told him point-blank that it interprets Native strictly as a citizen of Malaysia of any race which is now considered to be indigenous to Sarawak as set out in the Schedule under section 3 of the Interpretation Ordinance (1958 Edition), Chapter 1 of the Laws of Sarawak “and any admixture of the above races with each other”.

Obviously, the Sarawak NRD is wrong in law to ignore the said administrative policy circular from the Chief Secretary to the Government. The said circular has never been successfully challenged in Court and therefore, until such time, stands valid in law.

“Law” is not just Adat, the Constitution and Acts/Enactments/Ordinances but also constitutional conventions, administrative policies and even includes what can be deemed as “politically correct”.

That’s how Momogun (non-Natives) in Sabah can apply for Pasok (Native) status provided they are citizens in the state living among the latter community and habitually speaking Native languages and practising Native culture, customs and traditions.

For example, the Queen of England can refuse to appoint a Prime Minister on the grounds that the unwritten constitution and related aspects makes no reference to a Prime Minister.

In reality, the Queen appoints the Prime Minister anyway by convention. Otherwise, she would be precipitating a constitutional crisis.

Likewise, the Sarawak NRD has no business ignoring the said circular by the Chief Secretary to the Government. Wither 1Sarawak, if not 1Malaysia!

Those unhappy with the said circular, and this by the way does not include the Sarawak NRD, should take up the matter in Court by way of a Judicial Review of the administrative policy.
So, the right thing for the Sarawak NRD to do under the circumstances would be to accept the applications from “Sarawakian” and leave it to others with locus standi to challenge the administrative ruling in Court.

Instead, the Sarawak NRD seems to have created its own mini-administrative ruling to oppose the circular.

The Federal Government is also irked by the state government, under Taib’s directive, routinely barring Malaysian citizens from Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah entering Sarawak.

The Special Provisions for East Malaysia, under the Immigration Act 1967, does not bestow the right to bar citizens from Sabah and Sarawak. The provision is only meant to safeguard local jobs from being taken by Peninsular Malaysians.

Likewise, Taib has been misusing the Immigration to deny long-term work permits to Peninsular Malaysians or Sabahans appointed as heads of Federal Departments in Sarawak. These appointees can only secure three-month work permits at a time instead of one for three years.

Will Prime Minister Mohd Najib Abdul Razak blink when push comes to shove on the difficult patches with the state government and, as it is being predicted by the locals, flee with his tail between the legs when Taib says, “boo!”

The talk in Kuching is that Taib has gone back on his public pledge, made during the state elections in Sarawak last year, to resign as Chief Minister not long after the results come in and certainly well before the 13th General Elections. Instead, Taib woke up the 90-year-old Governor and had himself sworn in as the Chief Minister in the dead of night instead of waiting until the next morning.

Taib, when pressed by Najib on the resignation issue, is reported to have retorted in a challenge: “Let’s see who will retire first, whether me or you!”

The Federal Government is also extremely unhappy that the Sarawak state government has virtually ignored several NCR land cases which went against it in Court. Putrajaya released several million ringgit to demarcate Native lands in Sarawak but Taib, being displeased with the funding, has been dragging his foot on the issue. In the lands reluctantly demarcated so far by the state government, only the area immediately surrounding a longhouse is being considered NCR land while communal land further away is being treated as state land.

Najib seems ever mindful that Taib, with at least 25 parliamentary seats behind him, can dictate to him at least for the moment given his stand-off in Peninsular Malaysia with the national opposition alliance Pakatan Rakyat.

It goes without saying that had Taib been a non-Muslim, Najib would have gone after him hammer and tongs as what former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad did to Pairin.

This is message from My Hero Tok Guru Nik Aziz to All Sarawakians to vote for Pakatan Rakyat tomorrow!

For once, Sarawakians must do themselves a favor. Give yourselves a chance. Taib Mahmud and his gang of thieves had 30 years to rob Sarawak dry. Now Sarawakians have this one chance to change things. This is the chance to regain dignity and pride as a decent human being. Give yourselves the chance to determine your own destiny. Show Barisan National at the very least, show you matter. Throw out corruption. Throw out incompetence. Throw out a lifetime of neglect. Reject Taib Mahmud and the BN. Give your children and grandchildren the chance. Say it’s enough. You gave Taib Mahmud 30 years of chance. He has taken everything. Enough is Enough!

Online news blog Sarawak Report, which has been disclosing revelations on Chief Minister Taib Mahmud’s extensive business empire and unexplainable wealth running into billions of US dollars, has come under massive attack.

According to Sarawak Report owner Clare Rewcastle Brown, the site has been experiencing interrruptions over the past week “which culminated in concerted attack yesterday in the UK and then going fullblown and global overnight”.

“Our web experts say it is a Distributed Denial of Service Attack (DDOS) , the same form of attack that brought down WikiLeaks.

“They use robots to shoot bits of software to flood the server,” said Rewcastle in an email to FMT.

She blames Barisan Nasional for the attacks on her site.

She said it appeared that BN has suddenly realised the growing spread of information about corruption in Sarwak.

“We regard it as the latest of a series of highly inept and dishonest attempts to undermine our website.

“Clearly BN do not find themselves in a position to answer our findings and arguments, so they have taken the cheat route instead.

“Their methods of attacking us have all be very expensive, but highly counter-productive and have caused them to look pretty foolish in the process.

“They can’t seem to control the internet anymore. With the election campaign underway, Taib can’t seem to explain his wealth anymore,” she said.

Different counter attacks

She said BN had tried different ways of counter-attacking Sarawak Report.

“First they tried to out-number us with 30 or so look alike sites, all praising Taib Mahmud. Then they tried to ‘piggy-back’ us with a sound alike site with an almost identical name!

“Next they started posting paid ads for their site at the top of the google search page for Sarawak Report.

“By this time we had a loyal readership and they still made no impact at all.

“So, now the ultimate cheat. They have thrown more money into an attempt to knock us out altogether,” she said.

She added that all latest articles will now be posted in Sarawak Report’s Facebook until the site is back up.

New article on BN’s cyber war

In line with that, Rewcastle has put out a new article on the ‘BN’s cyber war’

According to new report, there have been dozens of new sites which have popped up under the control of PBB Youth Information leader, Abdul Aziz Adenan Satem, who is the son of Adenan Satem, Taib’s PBB Information Chief. He is also Taib’s nephew.

The report continues to state:

“All these sites are just like the Borneo Post and are by definition as boring as hell with the finger-prints of BN propaganda over every line. But, Abdul Aziz’s biggest and proudest effort has been a site called Sarawak Reports.

As they say ‘imitation is the sincerest form of flattery’, so of course we all know that this means that young Abdul regards our site to be a massive success and he wants others to come to his site thinking they are visiting ours.

This attempt to ‘piggy-back’ our site is in fact a well-known tactic by cheat marketing outfits. Such people hope that a person, looking for say a washing machine, will Google for a reputable site and end up by mistake purchasing from the dodgy replica site instead.

In a crass attempt to disguise their involvement in the site, they have hosted it through an outfit in the USA, run by a fellow called Todd Ash of Easy Internet Marketing in Scottsdale, Arizona.

His own advertising tells you all you need to know about Todd Ash, who likes to call himself “billionaire” and aggressively threatens any critics of his various get rich quick schemes, which range from using water as petrol to chain marketing ventures.”

Sarawak Report’s latest article can be accessed at

Just got this e-mail from Sahabat Alam Malaysia.


We wish to inform you that the following cases will be heard in the Federal Court in Putrajaya at 8.30 am on Tuesday, March 1, 2011.

Bato Bagi & Others v State Government of Sarawak;


Jalang Ak Paran & Another v State Government of Sarawak & Another.

On March 1, 2011, the Bato Bagi civil legal action, which was filed by five Bakun Hydroelectric Project-affected communities, will be heard together at the Federal Court with another Sarawak civil case, Jalang Anak Paran, due to the similar thread that runs through both cases.

For the first time at the Federal Court, the lawyers for these cases, Tuan Haji Sulaiman Abdullah and Mr. Baru Bian, will argue that native customary rights is akin to right to life under Article 5 of the Federal Constitution.

The Court will also hear arguments on other fundamental rights under the Federal Constitution and the constitution of the State of Sarawak and on the issue of adequate compensation.

Essentially, both cases are challenging the authorities regarding the extinguishment of their native customary rights for the construction of the Bakun dam and a pulpmill factory within their customary land, respectively.

Representatives from the five Bakun-affected communities comprising Uma Balui Lebue, Uma Ukit, Uma Lesong, Uma Kulit and Uma Bakah will be present in court as with the representative from the Jalang Anak Paran case.

If you can be in Putrajaya on the morning of Tuesday, March 1, 2011, please come to court to show your support for the communities. We hope to get as many people in court as possible. Interested media organisations and bloggers are also welcome to speak to the community representatives.

For further information, please call +604-8299511.

Sarawak´s Chief Minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud is now famous for the wrong reasons. His immunity from the law in Malaysia has drawn worldwide condemnation and it appears to be unstoppable.I just picked this up from America’s California Chronicle

We Are Calling For An International Boycott of Palm Oil from Sarawak, Malaysia.

Joseph Raglione

January 23, 2011

Gentle readers of this American Chronicle, the only way to non-violently fight back against destructive abusers of our Planet’s Natural Environment, is to boycott their profit making ability. Under Sarawak´s Chief Minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud, who has been in power since 1981, corruption is rampant. I suggest we do not import Palm Oil from Sarawak, Malaysia, and specifically nothing from Mahmud and his family. I suggest the international boycott begins today because people willing to destroy nature for profit will not be selling you anything good in the future! Palm Oil laden with pesticides will most likely be their crop of choice, after they have destroyed their beautiful Rain Forest..>


Sarawak Government Announces Destruction Of 1 Million Hectares Of Tropical Forests.

Land grab for oil palm plantations in the East Malaysian state to become “more aggressive”

KUCHING (SARAWAK), MALAYSIA, December 14, 2010 –/WORLD-WIRE/– The Sarawak government intends to convert one million hectares of land into oil palm plantations within the next ten years. Most of this land is currently covered by secondary rainforests, yet it also includes fruit and rubber gardens as well as hitherto untouched primary rainforests, including peatland swamp forests.

According to Sarawak’s Land Development Minister, James Masing, the government needed to look into a “more aggressive” conversion of native lands into oil palm plantations. He said that the state government intended to double its oil palm plantation area from the current 920,000 hectares to 2 million hectares by 2020, and stated that his ministry had requested funds from the Malaysian federal government for this purpose. The announcement was made in an interview with The Star, Malaysia’s largest English-language newspaper.

Masing’s announcement comes as a shock to human rights and environmental campaigners who are increasingly concerned about the ruthless alienation of native lands and the rapid degradation of Sarawak’s rainforests, one of the most biodiverse habitats in the world. Last year, Malaysia’s indigenous organizations called for a moratorium on the development of new plantations due to the blatant disregard of native rights by the state authorities.

Sarawak’s failure to enforce its forest legislation policies and its unlawful handling of the native rights issue have recently caused the European Union to stall timber trade talks with Malaysia over a Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA).

While the state’s logging policies have been controversial for more than two decades, the root cause seems to be the massive corruption under Sarawak´s Chief Minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud, who has been in power since 1981. Taib has recently come under fire over land deals attributed to his family members and a large number of overseas properties belonging to his family, whose wealth is of unaccounted origin.”

Please contact us for further information:

Bruno Manser Fund,

Socinstrasse 37

CH-4051 Basel, Switzerland,,

Tel. +41 61 261 94 74

Copyright © 2010, World-Wire. All rights reserved.

The current situation must be the most humiliating situation for the Barisan National. The perception of a corrupt image are hitting the party right where it hurts, and the party cannot do anything much about it, other than its past practice of having not to talk anything about corruption or investigation (which has been done many times in the past, typically to calm down any controversy and hope that with time, the corruption stench no longer remains high in the public image).

There are a number of high-profile corruption scams that have hit the Sarawak Government and the Barisan National hard – whether these be the controversy about the allotment of timber logging rights, or about the billions made from kickbacks from timber deals, or the newer scam about the Native Customary Lands sold for a song to Taib Mahmud’s children.

It is this Native Customary Land scam that has really hit the BN hard in the state of Sarawak. One may ask as to what is new, after all, there is a public perception that the Chief Minister and his Government and the Bureaucracy are very corrupt, and so this scam is another proof of the same level of corruption. However, there is a difference, since in this case, the level of corruption is visible very easily, partly because of a high level of media attention, and also because there is a lot of internal Barisan National politics at play.

As Finance Minister and Chief Minister,Taib Mahmud has abused his position and it stinks. What really happened ? At a very high level, it seems a pretty easy situation even if all the intricate details are not revealed.

There was a large area of Native Customary Land of the indigenous Berawan tribe and Chief Minister Taib Mahmud was responsible for the forced acquisition of this area to build a resort, for which the tribespeople received virtually no compensation.

My evidence therefore further exposes Taib Mahmud for having authorised this land-snatch for his own direct benefit and his family, as it was in an important location, and there is something very valuable that could be converted into a real value. And the people behind this were truly clued into the system, since they knew the levers to turn and to get approval, as they were the Government and most importantly, they were the bloodline to the Chief Minister himself.

Yes the Royal Mulu Resort. The players were Taib’s family, including his sister Raziah, her third husband Robert Geneid and the family of his late brother Arip Mahmud.

The Berawan people were initially accused by Taib of being “greedy” for refusing to hand over their lands for ‘development’. Taib used the army and police to imprison the Berawan natives and put fear into them to hand over their customary land. The leaders of the Berawan tribe protested but were brutally put down.

The nomadic Penan of the area also were affected as they have likewise lost their hunting grounds, due to Taib-sponsored logging all around the actual park and they are now living in shanty settlements on the fringes of the Berawan lands.

Now, the Barisan National in Sarawak is stuck. The Chief Minister Taib is a lame-duck, since he has been exposed brutally (having 4 close relatives involved in this land grab while denying anything). Apparently the BN President our Premier Najib Tun Razak is very angry with Taib (one can only take this with a pinch of salt since it is impossible to believe that he does not know about the level of corruption that is present in Sarawak); he must be angry that he could not control the exposure and exposed the BN to such projections.

But, Taib is determined not to go down so easily; he denies Royal Mulu Resort belongs to his family. But a check with the ROS shows links to his family and his footprints are everywhere.

Even though Taib may believe BN will win in this coming state elections and that he will continue to remain the Chief Minister, he is determined to take down other major contenders for the Chief Ministership, such that a less politically powerful person becomes the chief minister, and can be subject to many pressures.

Right now, Premier Najib is leaving Taib in place, but one can be sure that the Barisan National will be projected as highly corrupt during the coming state election campaigning. Premier Najib knows that Taib is a liability to the Barisan National but his hands are tied.

No wonder Taib is trying to stop Anwar and Jeffery from entering Sarawak in this coming elections. Taib is getting desperate because the shit has hit the fan again.

For me all these means its time for Taib to leave office now.

Let us have no illusions. Malaysia is moving fast to becoming a full fledged banana republic – no law, no rules, no accountabilty. A fresh batch of video recording of Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud will say it all.

By the way, below is our CM Taib Mahmud’s 20-something-year-old NEW WIFE….Tahun Baru! Azam Baru! Bini Baru!

(pinched this picture from “Haris’s The People’s Parliament”)

See here and here

And here are links to some of the information sources Taib Mahmud’s government is fearing:

Video on Taib Mahmud:

Video on native leader Baru Bian, challenger of Taib in the upcoming state election:

Sarawak Report exposes on Taib corruption:

Daily news shows focussing on rural Sarawak interest:

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