Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Bakun Damned

The people of East Malaysia are holding their breath as flooding of the Bakun Dam commences. Coupled with the burning season, this promised land has already dried up.

The mammoth monument is supposedly the tallest concrete-faced rockfill in the world and the largest in Asia outside China. Before you whoop for joy and stupidly holler "Malaysia Boleh!" consider that China is approximately 7 times the size of Sarawak and is embedded in the world's largest Continent, compared to the island of Borneo. I am horrified. Environmentalists have spoken against it. Has there been a charter to address these issues? Do the leaders wonder what will happen if the dam bursts? If the Malaysian Government and associated ministers had consistently demanded high-quality goods then maybe my fears may be allayed but where relatives are given preference over merit, there is little to hope for.

Will the mighty Rajang one day turn into the drain of the Klang River?

Thank you Malaya, for giving us Bakun Dam. Thank you for leaders who enjoy free electricity from our Dam in the name of power. Thank you for raiding our villagers and having scant regard for the culture and way of life and worth of our natives; our bumiputera. Thank you for destroying our flora and fauna and our water catchment areas. Thank you if the cure for cancer were lost in the demolition of our virgin forests. Thank you for hoarding the profits of our produce and leaving Sarawak to subsist on the negligible amount you carve out for us in your budget plans. Thank you for propagating that the only jungle worth having is a concrete one. Thank you for the stagnant reminder of why East Malaysians continue to hold West Malaysia at arm's length.

Speaking from my line of work, I do not believe that West Malaysians should be afforded any right of Court in Sabah & Sarawak, ad hoc or otherwise. I do nevertheless salute the Malayan Bar Council for its apparent independence, commended efficiency and strict adherence to the health of justice. Unfortunately, the Bar Council cannot prevent injustice in every circumstance. It cannot watch each member or prevent every shady deal. At the risk of increasing efficiency and expanding pioneering areas, Sarawak may lose her affability and the foreseen influx of unchecked injustice into our legal system would be too great. West Malaysians have to be told; they do not have it all. And if they ask why, just point to the Bakun Dam.