Population migration due to Baleh Dam needs to be planned, managed well — Masing

Masing (centre) flanked by Manchan on his right in a group photo. Also seen are (from right) Norman, Sahamran and Yusuf.

KUCHING, Aug 6: Efforts aimed towards managing sound social demographic change need to begin now to address the issue of population migration from Long Singut and Pandora Camp area along the Baleh River.

Highlighting this, Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing revealed that before the Baleh Dam comes into operation, those residing in low-lying areas need to relocate and migrate.

“The upgrading of the existing logging road that connects Long Singut to Mantan Camp will enable the movement from the Kenyah settlements at Long Singut and Pandora Camp area into Long Busang.

“From there these folks can then proceed on towards the Bakun HEP and Belaga eventually,” he disclosed after receiving a courtesy call from Sarawak General Operations Force (GOF) Brigade Commander YDH SAC Mancha Ata here today.

They discussed security matters along the Sarawak-Indonesia border with focus on tightening and increasing security measures along the areas close to the three hydroelectric power dams, namely Bakun Dam, Murum Dam and Baleh Dam.

Masing, who is also Minister of Infrastructure and Port Development, pointed out that it was necessary to safeguard the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) post at Tapak Megah against illegal crossings and smuggling of goods from petrol to sugar.

“Once in operation, the Tapak Megah CIQ will be able to serve the folks at Long Busang against illegal activities,” he said.

He revealed that Tapak Megah is only 20km away from the Kalimantan border while on the other side about 20km further is Long Nawang with a population of 5,000.

“Bearing this in mind, the establishment of the CIQ in Tapak Megah can also control and reduce the entry of illegal immigrants into Sarawak,” he added.

Also present during the courtesy call were PGA Sarawak Brigade Adjutant DSP Yusuf Baki Khan, PGA Sarawak Brigade Operation/Intelligence Staff Officer DSP Sahamran Ibrahim and PGA Sarawak Brigade Intelligence Officer ASP Norman Chendan. — DayakDaily