‘Why were Sarawak editors left out of Petronas briefing?’

E11 Platform Complex, Baronia oilfield in Miri. — file pic

KUCHING, August 14: Politicians from Sarawak have criticised national oil corporation Petronas for organising a media event without inviting editors from Sarawak.

Former Padungan assemblyman Dominique Ng, said such an event must include editors from Sarawak as the state is the main oil and gas producer in the country.

“The way the so called “closed door editors’ briefing session” with an objective “to shed some light on the most recently debated topic” was organised was anything but light-shedding!

“It was on the contrary and it is shrouded with mystery and even the invite itself was filled with contradictions and double talk.

“The fact that there was even a topic on “the Sarawak perspective” wherein no Sarawakians were invited, speaks volumes of the arrogance of Petronas in thinking that they know what was best for Sarawak and can know better than Sarawakians themselves!” Ng told DayakDaily today.

Ng who is also a human rights lawyer said, such a closed door session with only Malayan editors being invited was meant to be an exercise of winning over what is crucial to Petronas’ propaganda on the currently hot topic.

“Petronas should have invited all editors especially those from Sarawak to attend in order to have a real briefing session of any meaning,” Ng stressed.

On the same wavelength, Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) Youth deputy chief Miro Simuh said in any discussion of oil and gas in the country, Petronas must invite Petroleum Sarawak Berhad (Petros) as it is the regulator of oil and gas in Sarawak.

He reiterated that excluding Petros from such a discussion will be perceived as having a ‘very unhealthy’ agenda.

“In any such discussion on oil and gas in the country, a representative from Petros must be invited to present Sarawak’s perspective,” stressed the Serembu assemblyman.

Also commenting on the issue, Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing said the discussion of such a topic was good but questioned who represented Sarawak on such an important national issue.

“The seminar on oil and gas in Malaysia will create better understanding of this industry provided its speakers are those who are well versed in the laws which govern the industry, especially in Sarawak and Sabah, in its historical perspective.

“And I am very interested to know who spoke on Sarawak’s perspective and I don’t think twenty minutes is enough to say what needs to be said on oil and gas in Sarawak. The devil of this industry is in the details which this seminar may not be able to address,” said Masing.

They were commenting on the closed-door session organised by Petronas whereby only five editors from West Malaysia were present.

When contacted, the event organiser confirmed the event was held today in Kuala Lumpur and disclosed that among the related issues which were discussed were the ‘Petroleum Development Act (PDA) 1974 – Its Historical Context’, ‘Production Sharing Contract (PSC)’, ‘The Sarawak Perspective and Impact on the Malaysian Oil & Gas Industry’. — DayakDaily