As the Penan community continues its battle with state-owned company Sarawak Energy Bhd (SEB) over the Murum Dam, SEB has awarded two contracts worth more than RM600 million to a company linked to the son of Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud.
According to a Aug 29 filing with Bursa Malaysia, Sarawak Cable Bhd said its subsidiary Trenergy Infrastructure Sdn Bhd (Trenergy) won two contracts, worth RM352.8 million and RM265.8 million each.
The contracts are for a 500kV electricity transmission line from Mapai to Lachau and the 500kV Lachau-Tondong transmission line, which will be completed within 23 and 26 months respectively from Nov 15.
Trenergy is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sarawak Cable, in which Taib’s son Mahmud Abu Bekir is chairperson. Bekir also owns 21 percent of the shares in Sarawak Cable.
Denouncing the decision, Swiss NGO Bruno Manser Fund said that SEB’s Norwegian CEO Torstein Sjøtveit has “passed all levels of decency… (and) lost all credibility by claiming that he contributes to the development of Sarawak”.
The decision, BMF director Lukas Strauman said, “continues with the corrupt practice of favouring the chief minister’s family”.
Strauman said Sjøtveit has “made himself a tool of the Taib family’s unrestrained greed and corruption” and should be ashamed of how he has affected Norway’s reputation in Malaysia.
“Already, between 2010 and early 2013, Sjøtveit had granted more than US$220 million (RM695 million) in contracts to Taib family-linked enterprises.”
Malaysiakini has contacted SEB on this and is awaiting its response. – Malaysiakini