Bruno Manser Fund will start a web site today to run a campaign against the massive deforestation which was started by Taib Mahmud ‘s rule in sarawak. The web site promised to disclose 40 big companies which are implicated in the forest destruction-which has started campaigns from inside and outside Sarawak.The issue is: how to get international campaign to produce impact locally? It is well known that many international campaigns before has not produce the full impact locally due to lack of media in Sarawak’s vast interior. Such lack of information has caused the local voters to keep re-electing the politicians who exploit and destroy their forests and and rob their lands. Is there an answer to this? The Radio Free Sarawak has tried to address this issue by broadcasting a Short Wave transmission to the Sarawak interior -but it is not known to what extent the radio transmission has reached the target audiences. TV Sarawak Bebas -a local media initiative has mass produced CDs for circulation to the interior. Only fund is limiting the number of CDs which are produced now. May be generous public who see the destruction from the current regime can contribute towards the CDs production?
Bruno Manser Fund to launch international campaign against Sarawak timber corruption
For immediate release (from Bruno Manser Fund)
Campaign focus on Sarawak Chief Minister Taib Mahmud – Corruption identified as one of the main drivers of Borneo deforestation.
The Bruno Manser Fund is about to launch an international campaign against the blatant corruption and abuse of public funds by Abdul Taib Mahmud, Chief Minister of the Malaysian state of Sarawak. A campaign website, http://www.stop-timber-corruption.org, will go online on Monday, 21 February, and will be regularly updated and equipped with features for an interactive campaign with public participation.
Taib, one of South East Asia’s longest-serving politicians, has been in office since 1981 and is planning to celebrate his 30th anniversary in power on 26 March 2011. The 75-year old kleptocrat will stand as an incumbent for another five-year term of office in the upcoming Sarawak state elections, which are due to be held before July.
Taib has abused his public office to a frightening extent and has managed to convert the state of Sarawak into his family’s private estate. He simultaneously holds the offices of Chief Minister, and Finance Minister, as well as that of State Planning and Resources Minister, which gives him enormous political power. In addition, Malaysia’s “Barisan Nasional” coalition, which forms the federal government, is dependent on Taib’s support to remain in power. Sarawak’s largest private company, its electricity supply, large-scale logging interests and the control of log exports are also concentrated in the hands of the Taib family.
Since 1983, Taib and his immediate family members have started to transfer considerable parts of their ill-gotten assets overseas. The Bruno Manser Fund has established a black list with 49 Taib companies in eight countries worth hundreds of millions, if not billions, of dollars. The list will be published next week, and the authorities of these countries will be asked to freeze all Taib assets and to launch criminal investigations against the Taib family.
In Sarawak, corruption has proved to be one of the main drivers of deforestation. While most of the state’s forests have been logged or converted into plantations over the last three decades, Sarawak’s indigenous communities have seen little, if any, benefit from Taib’s so-called politics of development. Poverty, illiteracy and a lack of basic infrastructure are omnipresent in rural Sarawak.
Sarawak’s numerous indigenous communities, and particularly the Penan, have struggled since the 1980s against destructive logging and have fought for their land rights but, in most cases, they have been out-manoeuvred and cheated by Taib and his cronies.
Please contact us for more information: Bruno Manser Fonds, Socinstrasse 37, 4051 Basel / Switzerland, +41 61 261 94 74
Update: Released from this web site here: 49 companies of Taib Mahmud:
Australia（10）：Australian Universities International Alumni Convention Pty Ltd (ACN: 081942903); Donmastry Pty Ltd (ACN: 093 907 843); Geneid Holdings Pty Ltd (ACN: 087759751); Golborne Pty Ltd. (ACN: 061844148); Golden Sovereign Development Ltd (ACN 103 925 613); Kesuma Holdings Pty Ltd. (ACN 105540636); Newtop Holdings Pty Ltd (ACN: 066588225); Ostgro Australia Pty Ltd (ACN: 094721070); Sitehost Pty Ltd (ACN: 062312743); Valentine on George Pty Ltd (ACN: 105541562)
Virgin Islands(UK)（3）：Astar Properties Ltd. (201522); CMS Global (BVI) Ltd.; Tess Investments Ltd (203511)
Canada（9）：Canada: Adelaide Ottawa Corporation (2028546); City Gate International Corporation (446027-8); Glowell Development Corporation (1545868); Preston Building Holding Corporation (2108122), Sakto Development Corporation Pte. Ltd. (155207-4), Sakto Corporation (340439-1), Sakto Management Services Corporation (655948-4), Tower One Holding Corporation (2028542), Tower Two Holding Corporation (2018543)
Hong Kong（7）：Grand Shine Trading Ltd (0127665); Grand Will Ltd (0133932); Herolite Investment Ltd (129119); Natalite Investment Ltd (129502); Regent Star Company Ltd (0130318); Richfold Investment Ltd (0130308); Whittaker Company Ltd (0161304)
Jersey Island(UK)（1）：Sogo Holdings Ltd (43148)
Malaysia（13）：Achi Jaya Holdings Sdn Bhd; Borsarmulu Resort Sdn Bhd (213014-M); Cahya Mata Sarawak Sdn Bhd (21076-T); K&N Kenanga Holdings Bhd; Kumpulan Parabena Sdn Bhd; Mesti Bersatu Sdn Bhd (758849-V); Naim Holdings Berhad (585467-M); Sanyan Group; Sarawak Aluminium Company (783974-K); Sarawak Energy Bhd.; Ta Ann Group; Titanium Management Sdn Bhd; UBG Berhad (240931-X)
UK（2）：Ridgeford Consulting Ltd (5572163); Ridgeford Properties Ltd (3268801)
USA（4）：Sakti International Corporation Inc.; Wallysons Inc; W.A. Boylston Inc; W.A.Everett Inc.
The Stop Timber Corruption Campaign web site is here.