BAN MAY BE EXTENDED
Interests of legitimate miners must be taken into account, says MB
MENTERI Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob hinted that the moratorium on bauxite mining in Pahang may be extended to June 15.
He said the moratorium, which was supposed to end on March 15, might be extended by the Federal Government due to the threat of environmental destruction posed by unlicensed bauxite miners.
According to media reports, residents of Felda Bukit Kuantan and Beserah here had claimed that illegal bauxite mining was ongoing.
If true, the mining activities would contravene the moratorium, which had been in force since Jan 15 last year.
The moratorium has been extended several times since then.
“If we continue with the moratorium, (legal) miners like the subsidiary (YP Mining Sdn Bhd) of Yayasan Pahang will be affected. But, if we allow (the moratorium) to lapse on March 15, I am worried we would lose control like last time.
“People will simply dig out (the bauxite),” Adnan said after attending a gathering of retired teachers at Rumah Tamu Sri Gelora here yesterday.
Adnan said the interests of legitimate bauxite miners, such as YP Mining, must be taken into account because if the company was prevented from mining bauxite, it would affect its ability to generate revenue for Yayasan Pahang.
“When no money comes in, YP Mining cannot contribute to Yayasan Pahang, which will not be able to assist poor students (through its programmes).”
When asked how much further the moratorium could be extended, Adnan said the government would make a decision by June.
“Before we make a decision, the state government has to sit down and consider what needs to be done.”
Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob