Resettlement Action Plan (RAP) For Murum Giving Comprehensive Compensation Package For The Natives In Murum

Kuching, 21 October 2013:  Sarawak Energy is concerned over the incorrect report being disseminated by the NGOs that does not give the true picture of the relocation and compensation of the people affected by the Murum HEP and intended to mislead the public. 

For obvious reasons, they are being selective in the information that they choose to highlight to the people through online and printed media.  They say that the people in Murum are not willing to be relocated as Sarawak Energy is giving them RM16,000 only for the compensation to their lands.  What they failed to inform the public is the total package that the affected communities are getting under the Government’s Resettlement Action Plan (RAP), which is described as one of the best in the world.

For Murum Resettlement Plan, the affected communities will receive:

  1. 15 hectares of land per household on the basis of one hectare per household for community purposes, and 14 hectares for agriculture
  2. Forest access to wildlife and forest produce -  total area of up to 20,000 hectares
  3. RM15,000 ex-gratia cash payment upon relocation
  4. Temporary Income Support valued at RM850 a month from the time they are resettled at the new resettlement village.
  5. Free housing - One unit (bilik) of longhouse per family of 1,300 sq. ft.
  6. Clean and stable water supply
  7. Electricity supply with subsidized monthly allocation of RM40 per family
  8. Free Astro NJOI package for every longhouse
  9. Integrated community halls with chapel and kindergarten
  10. School
  11. Medical assistance
  12. Own garden plot per family 
  13. Livelihood restoration programmes through overall sustainable agriculture programs up to 2020

For the longhouse and infrastructure facilities alone, the cost involved is RM213.3 million and this translates to more than RM600,000 per household.  This is not inclusive of other amenities, facilities and benefits such as water supply, the ex-gratia, moving grant and ritual ceremony cost, temporary support for the first year worth RM850 per month, agriculture project and many more. 

On the development at the Murum site, Sarawak Energy expressed its dismay that the NGOs are instigating the people to remain at site, with improper living condition, sanitation, water and food in order to pressure the Government with their additional demand of RM500,000 cash compensation.   The NGOs' motive is clear.  They are trying to turn the scenario negatively so it will look bad on Sarawak Energy and the government especially in the eyes of the world. 

There are continuous engagement being made between the affected communities with Sarawak Energy and representatives from the government and the most recent was on the 16th of October in Bintulu.  The meeting was chaired by the Resident of Kapit and attended by  representatives from Murum Penan Development Committee (MPDC),  penghulus, Ketua Kampungs and Chiefs from Long Wat, Long Malim Penan, Long Malim Kenyah, Long Luar, Long Tangau, Long Menapa and Long Singu other than the key people from the Government. 

In the meeting, the representatives expressed their appreciation to the government on the facilities provided at the new resettlement area such as free housing, electricity supply, clean water supply, huge land and other facilities provided to them. The only issue that they wanted to negotiate further was on the cash compensation.

Through meetings and discussion with the affected communities, much has progressed which includes the local participations in projects related to the dam such as biomass removal and reservoir maintenance project.  Sarawak Energy is also working closely with MPDC in facilitating the needs of the resettled communities such as providing transportation for the children to attend school and continue with other initiatives such as the literacy program.