NIOSH Safety Talk Reinforces Sarawak Energy's Zero Tolerance Towards Accident At Work Place

KAPIT, 20TH APRIL, 2017, THURSDAY:  In reinforcing the commitment towards safety and zero tolerance to accidents at the work place, the Resident's office, Sarawak Energy and National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) organised a Safety Talk at the Dewan Suarah here today for the contractors engaged in the construction of the Kapit- Baleh road and the early phases of Baleh Hydroelectric Plant (HEP). The talk was graced by Deputy Chief Minister YB Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr. James Jemut Masing.  NIOSH was represented by its Chairman YBhg Tan Sri Datuk Seri Lee Lam Thye and Sarawak Energy by its Executive Vice President for Corporate Services, Puan Aisah Eden. In his speech, Tan Sri James highlighted on the government's comprehensive infrastructure development plan to develop Kapit which includes Tunoh New Township.   "RM600 million was allocated for the construction of a 40 km road from Mujong to Tunoh.  The road must be built first then the new township.  There is also a road from Mujong to Putai, about 73km long, costing RM 1.4 billion.  The Baleh bridge which was completed in November 2015 connects Kapit town to Mujong.  In addition, the road from Kanowit to Kapit which is about 90km is under construction and expected to complete by 2019.  This project is expected to cost some RM700 million." "These funds are available because of the Baleh dam and the people's positive attitude towards the project," said Tan Sri James. Tan Sri James also urged the local contractors to understand and adhere to safety requirements in implementing their works to reduce the risk of accidents at work. Puan Aisah Eden, in her welcoming address said, the safety talk was part of a constant and continuous efforts to remind and increase awareness among workers and contractors to place safety first.

She said, with everybody putting safety as top priority, it was not impossible to achieve zero work related injuries and fatalities. “Let us work together to achieve this goal and ensure that “Everyone Goes Home safely”, in accordance to Sarawak Energy’s safety slogan,” added Aisah.

She also said that the safety talk today was very timely as many construction activities related to Baleh hydroelectric project (HEP), such as the road from Kapit to Putai, would be commencing soon. The Baleh HEP is going to be one of the largest infrastructure projects in Sarawak and will generate another 1,285 MW of renewable energy to the grid. The project which is bigger than Murum HEP is projected to be completed by 2025. Site clearing, earthworks and the establishment for contractors’ camp will start by June and followed by the detailed engineering and main project works.

"Baleh HEP is therefore going to be the catalyst of growth for Kapit Division.  The project is estimated to create about 3500 job opportunities for skilled workers,” she added.

To prepare for the implementation of the project, Sarawak Energy in collaboration with the State Government is organising a special training programme for about 500 youths from Kapit to undergo various technical skill courses which emphasise on safety in specific skills, safety competence and safety culture.  Todate, 60 participants have completed the training.

Talking on behalf of NIOSH, Tan Sri Lee expressed his hope for everyone involved in the project to aim for zero accident at work.

He said, big corporations should encourage and assist their vendors and contractors to adhere to the occupational safety and health (OSH) law and follow the rules and regulations set by the authorities.  He congratulated Sarawak Energy for its serious efforts and for working closely with NIOSH on this. About 300 contractors and community leaders attended the event.  Also present were member of Parliment for Hulu Rajang YB Datuk Wilson Ugak and ADUN for Pelagus YB Wilson Nyabong.

Puan Aisah Eden presenting souvenirs to YB Tan Sri James (above) and Tan Sri Datuk Seri Lee Lam Thye (below).  Souvenirs are specially made by the community of Murum Penan Resettlement Scheme