By BORNEOTODAY REPORTERS
PENAMPANG: It would be most unfair for the Huguan Siou, Joseph Pairin Kitingan to request Moyog to make yet another sacrifice – this time through the Kaiduan Dam project.
Terrence Siambun, the Moyog State Assemblyman, said the area where the dam is being proposed holds vast potential for Eco-Tourism and Traditional & Complementary Medicine (T&CM).
“As for the Kaiduan Dam issue itself, my stand is clear. Since the villagers that I am representing object to that proposal, I respect and support their decision, Siambun said in a statement Monday.
“I also find it ridiculous for Pairin to request the Moyog folks to do another round of sacrifice; Sabah has vast lands and I don’t believe that there is no uninhabited place in the State that could fulfil his insatiable hunger of creating dams.”
The first time the Moyog people sacrificed their land was when the PBS government of that time, led by Pairin himself, to make way for the Babagon Dam, but that issue too has not yet fully resolved, according to some affected landowners.
After attending the solidarity gathering with the villagers at Kampung Terian on Sunday, Siambun said he was also saddened with the cowardly act of Pairin to hold a dialogue with the villagers without even having the courtesy to inform and invite either Darell Leiking, the Member of Parliament for Penampang, or he himself as the State Assemblyman for Moyog.
This only tells us how the BN State Leaders have no respect at all with the democratic system and afraid to engage with the villagers in the presence of the rightful elected representatives.
Siambun also highlighted that in the 90s, Kg. Terian and Kg. Buayan had massive areas full of timber.
“It only took two decades of BN governance and administration to see how all the timber here while the villagers never had the chance to enjoy this natural resource,” he said.
“Of course, when you clear the areas for plantations, you should give the timber to the villagers or at least half of the revenue received from the timber sale should have been given back to the villagers.
Siambun who is also Parti Warisan Sabah treasurer said what the BN government should have done in the first place during the 90s was to promote this place as tourism destination.
This would have made the area generate high revenue on traditional healing and homeopathy including massage and spas to necessitate the State government to proceed with further development of infrastructures and/or amenities that will further assist the villagers in terms of economy, education and so on.
“Even Jojo Struys, a top radio host from KL, is full of praise with this area and she even uploaded photograhs at Kg. Terian/Buayan that she herself took on her Facebook,” Siambun pointed out.
“Now the place fast losing its glory and for Pairin to come to the village offering a so-called better livelihood compared to what they are having now show how irresponsible this BN Government is.”
He added: “Thus, I will not argue anymore whether the Kaiduan Dam is necessary or not; the timbers have been plundered, there had never been any intention to fully capitalize the rich bio-diversity at Ulu Papar to the advantage of the villagers and now their lands is set to be flooded just to fulfil Pairin’s dream.
How much insult can an ordinary Moyog folk take anymore? Hence, why should I support the proposal when the plundering and destruction were done during the governance and administration of the same BN Government?
“No, as a Moyog folk, I cannot tolerate this happening on my own backyard.”
And as for Kaiduan Dam, suffice to say that we will fight against it,” he added.
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