Baleh Community Leaders Visits Sarawak Energy

KUCHING, 15th SEPTEMBER 2015, TUESDAY: A delegation of 30 community leaders from Baleh led by Temenggong Dato James Jimbun Anak Unyat paid a courtesy call on Sarawak Energy at the Group's headquarters last Wednesday.

They were received by Sarawak Energy Group Chief Executive Officer, Datuk Torstein Dale Sjotveit and Executive Vice President of Corporate Services, Aisah Eden at Menara Sarawak Energy. The delegation was seeking updates on the Baleh HEP project status, which is located in the Kapit Division, as well as to explore ways to work together for the greater benefit of the Kapit community as a whole, should the state government give its green-light for the project.

The Social and Environmental Impact Assessment approval for Baleh HEP by Natural Resources and Environmental Board was given in March, this year. However, Sarawak Energy is currently waiting for State Cabinet approval for full go-ahead.

The visit by the community leaders was part of the continuous engagement between Sarawak Energy and the Baleh community on the proposed development of the Baleh HEP. Sarawak Energy, as a member of International Hydropower Association (IHA), is committed towards ensuring that Baleh HEP would be developed in the most sustainable way, for the best possible outcome for the people and in line with international standards and guidelines.

At the session, Sjotveit and his management team briefed the delegates on the project status and gathered their feedback on how the project could best benefit the Baleh people as a whole; from local entrepreneurs to longhouse residents. He also elaborated on the socio-economic opportunities available with the construction of the 1285MW project and urged the Baleh community to be ready to take advantage of the opportunities potentially heading their way.

In his speech, he said, “Sarawak Energy is developing a long term partnership with the community, through various social investment initiatives. We have started our CSR programs with the schools, contributing computers, worked with the Parent Teachers Association on a water supply project to the schools and also coming up with an educational program to improve the performance of local schools in the subjects of English, Science and mathematics.

“In preparation for the job opportunities coming to the area, Sarawak Energy is also sending local young people of Baleh for safety and mechanical skill training. We look forward to more community partnerships, should the project go-ahead be given,” he continued.

Speaking for the group, Temenggong Dato James Jimbun assured Sarawak Energy that they were willing to work together with Sarawak Energy for the greater benefit of the Kapit community.

Among the delegation were Kapit District Officer Elvis Didit, Jefferson Jamit Unyat, Political Secretary to the Chief Minister, Temenggong Dato’ Seri D’Raja Tan Kian Hoo and Dato Yong Hua Syhing, Chairman, Chinese Chamber of Commerce, Kapit.

Also present were Vice President for Hydro Polycarp Wong, Project Director for Baleh, Ir. Tan Chuan Ngan, Head of Corporate Communications, Peing Tajang and Head of the Corporate Social Responsibility Department, Jiwari Abdullah.

One for the album: Sarawak Energy Group Chief Executive Officer Datuk Torstein Dale Sjotveit (seated third left) and Temenggong Dato James Jimbun (seated fourth left) along with Sarawak Energy top management team and community leaders from Baleh.

Sarawak Energy Group Chief Executive Officer Datuk Torstein Dale Sjotveit meets with the community leaders. Also seen in the photo is the delegation's leader Temenggong Dato James Jimbun (right).