by Jonathan Chia and Marilyn Ten, email@example.com. Posted on May 6, 2015, Wednesday
It is better for the Chief Minister to meet NGOs directly especially those overseas so that they get a correct picture of the timber industry. Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr James Masing, Land Development Minister
KUCHING: Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem’s meeting with the NGOs in London on Monday has been described as a positive move in line with his new forest policies and directions
In his meeting with NGOs Adenan reiterated his stand on illegal logging when he pledged to save the state’s remaining forests and fight corruption in the timber industry.
Commenting on the chief minister’s trip to London, Land Development Minister Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr James Masing said he was very pleased to hear that Adenan was engaging with foreign NGOs in London so that they could get a better picture and correct facts of the state’s timber industry.
“It is better for the Chief Minister to meet NGOs directly especially those overseas so that they get a correct picture of the timber industry.
“Hence, with the understanding, they will make conclusion without bias,” he told The Borneo Post in a phone interview.
For state PKR vice chairman See Chee How, the reportedly cordial meeting of Adenan with representatives of the foreign NGOs would augur well for the state’s efforts to conserve forests and secure sustainability and legality of the state’s timber resources.
However, he pointed out that there was a need for a strong political will from the state to carry through the policy changes and plans.
“I am hopeful that the Chief Minister can convince his cabinet colleagues to reform this industry for the benefits of the state and the people.
“As an immediate measure, the Chief Minister should follow the footsteps of Sabah and Peninsular Malaysia to commit to the Europe Forest Law Enforcement, Government and Trade Voluntary Partnership Agreement with a clear deadline for the realisation of Timber Legality Assurance System to enable our timber and timber products to be exported to Europe at a premium,” he proposed.
See also emphasised that the state must show its commitment in forest conservation and care for the indigenous communities by gazetting Limbang Protected Forest (223,645 hectares), Tutoh-Apoh Forest Reserve (201,272 hectares) and Melana Protected Forest (53,500 hectares) as national parks and nature reserves, with the rights and privileges of the indigenous communities fully endorsed in the gazette notifications.