SOLYMONE BLOG

150 MARCH TO STOP MORE DAMS BEING BUILT IN MALAYSIA

KUALA LUMPUR , Malaysia - A group of 150 people made up of indigenous groups from Sabah, Sarawak and all across Peninsular Malaysia marched in solidarity in front of the Suria KLCC shopping mall yesterday morning.
The objective of the match is to persuade ASEAN Power Week delegates who were meeting inside, against investing in more large hydro power dams and associated facilities by Sarawak Energy Bhd and Tenaga Nasional Bhd. 
The protestors marched through the park, chanting slogans and holding up banners.
The march was endorsed by 33 concerned organisations and individuals including SUARAM (Suara Rakyat Malaysia) and SAM (Sahabat Alam Malaysia).
Besides bringing attention to the displacement of the Orang Asal(indigenous people) when dams were built, the protest was to send home the message that investors stood the risk of “becoming complicit in violating the constitutional rights to property and life of affected families, environmental crimes and unethical business practices.”
Speaking to the press, Thomas Jalong of the Indigenous Peoples Network said, “Mega-dams violate fundamental human rights by forcing indigenous peoples off their customary lands and into resettlement sites where people experience deplorable conditions of impoverishment, joblessness and hunger.”
Among those facing a bleak future of being displaced was Jeffry bin Hassan from a village called Pos Lanai.
Telling reporters his village was in danger of being demolished to make way for the dam construction, Jeffry said, “Forcing us to move from our customary land is akin to destroying us as a people.
“For us, as Indigenous People, we depend on our ancestral land for our livelihood, sustenance and spirituality and it is therefore essential to our well-being and identity.”

Source: Free Malaysia Today

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