Baram folks want Community Leaders to resign if they won’t listen to the people and proceed to support the Baram Dam
MIRI – About 40 people from Baram are calling for their community leaders to resign from their respective post if they are not interested in listening to the voices of the people who oppose the proposed Baram Dam project.
The group headed by Stephen Satie and Dominic Langat (left) made the call after having a meeting at Telang Usan Hotel, Miri to discuss about the latest statement made by The Federation of Orang Ulu Association Malaysia (Forum) in the Borneo Post last Friday (18 May) headlined “Community support for Baram Dam”.
“We want our community leaders to listen to our voices and not just listen to the politicians. We put our trust on our community leaders to look after our rights and interests and it is their responsibility to look after the well being of their community. If they are not capable to carry out this responsibility and are only interested to carry out the orders of the politicians, then they must resign,” said the concerned Oran Ulu group jointly.
The group were visibly upset with Orang Ulu community leader Temenggong Pahang Ding, Forum’s President Gerawat Gala and Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfred Jabu for making sweeping statements insinuating that the community in Baram have collectively agreed with the proposed dam without first verifying with all the 26 longhouses that are going to be affected directly.
Dorus Katan (right), of Long Tap which is one of the villages that is going to be directly affected, said that Forum’s claim are baseless and they do not have the mandate of the people of Baram to make such statements.
“We the people of Baram do not agree with this project and I wonder how Forum came to such conclusion when I, myself and my own community were not consulted,” said Dorus.
Michael Lahang (left) of Long Julan, another village which is also directly affected, concurred with Dorus Katan and said that Temenggong Pahang, Senator Lihan Jok, Gerawat Gala and Alfred Jabu do not represent the people that are directly affected and they should not be making any decisions that affect the interest of the people directly affected.
“Who are they to talk about our interest? They are not even from the area affected but yet they are the ones making statements on behalf of us,” said the visibly upset Michael.
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Press Statement issued by:
Chairman, JKKK Long Tungan