Thursday, December 22, 2005

No mining allowed in Maliau "The Lost World" Basin

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah’s pristine Maliau Basin will not be opened up for coal mining, Chief Minister Datuk Musa Aman said.

He gave an assurance that the Government was committed towards protecting the fauna- and flora-rich 588sq km Maliau Basin in perpetuity.

As such, the state was pushing for Maliau to be designated a World Heritage site, he told reporters after opening a seminar yesterday.

He was asked about talks that the state was negotiating with companies keen on carrying out mining activities in coal- rich Maliau Basin, dubbed the “The Lost World”.

He said that the Government had turned away prospective mining companies and told individuals and companies “not to waste their time” trying to get mining rights.

Musa said the Maliau Basin, together with Danum Valley, had been gazetted as a first-class forest reserve and any move to change its status needed the endorsement of the Sabah Assembly.

He earlier opened The Truth of Islam: A Vision of Ummah and the Rest of the World seminar, organised by the Institute of Islamic Understanding Malaysia (Ikim) in co-operation with the Sabah government.

Source: The Star

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