CM expects illegal logging in the state to be curbed
by Philip Kiew, firstname.lastname@example.org. Posted on October 21, 2014, Tuesday
MIRI: Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem said he expected enforcement officers and others entrusted to curb illegal logging in the state to discharge their duties well.
Adenan, flanked by Morshidi (on his right) and Lee, fielding questions at the press conference.
Invited guests and the enforcement officers at the integrity seminar.
“Until illegal logging or felling is tackled, I will not issue any more new timber licences,” he told reporters after opening the 3rd Civil Service Integrity Seminar here yesterday.
The 554 enforcement officers attending the seminar are from the Forest Department, Land and Survey Department, Sarawak Forestry Corporation, local government, government statutory bodies, police, Sarawak Palm Oil Plantation Owners Association, and Malaysian Palm Oil Board.
Adenan, also Minister of Resource Planning and Environment, said illegal logging had even occurred at the Meludam National Park in Sebuyau and Bukit Tiban in Bintulu.
“Forest officers would be armed, and I expect results. Enough is enough. More of the same is not acceptable,” he said, adding that this illegal activity was affecting the state’s coffer.
He also warned timber licensees not to log outside their designated areas.
“Timber licensees must keep logging to within their own area and not `raid’ other areas.”
On another matter, Adenan said the state would be creating more national parks to bring the tally to one million hectares. Currently, the gazetted area spans 800,000 hectares.
“We are confident this can be done. Our target is 10 per cent of the state’s land mass to be under national park and wildlife sanctuaries.”
He did not say how many more national parks would be created, but Tourism Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg did mention last June that six new national parks were in the offing.
Adenan said the process to create new national parks would include a three-month consultation period with the stakeholders.
Sarawak has one of most extensive protected forests in the country. It boasts 30 national parks, six wildlife sanctuaries, and eight nature reserves, covering a total of 799,627.70 hectares.
About 15 totally protected areas are currently opened to the public. These parks and nature reserves showcase the state’s natural heritage and act as key attractions for the state’s tourism industry.
Also present at the seminar were State Secretary Tan Sri Datuk Amar Mohamad Morshidi Abdul Ghani, Assistant Minister of Communication Datuk Lee Kim Shin, Assistant Minister of Culture and Heritage Liwan Lagan and Federal Secretary to Sarawak Datuk Md Yahaya Basimin.