World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


WWF asked to cut ties with corrupt Malaysian loggers

08 August 2011

WWF asked to cut ties with corrupt Malaysian loggers

The Bruno Manser Fund and the Australian Greens leader, Senator Bob Brown, are calling on the World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF) to suspend its cooperation with the Malaysian Ta Ann group for its close association with the Taib family, one of South East Asia's largest corruption networks.

In a letter to WWF International's General Director, James P. Leape, the Bruno Manser Fund is claiming that the Malaysian Ta Ann Holdings and its subsidiaries are "unfit for a cooperation" with the WWF "because of their close association with the Malaysian Taib family, one of South East Asia's largest corruption networks". Ta Ann is also mentioned for being "the major driver for high conservation value forest destruction" in Tasmania.

According to the Bruno Manser Fund, the Taib family has damaged the tropical rainforests of Borneo in unprecedented ways and is responsible for the systematic disposession of Sarawak's indigenous communities.

Ta Ann is one of 49 companies blacklisted by the Bruno Manser Fund for its close links with the Taibs. The company is controlled by Hamed Sepawi, a cousin of the Sarawak Chief Minister, Abdul Taib Mahmud ("Taib") and by Wahab Dolah, a Member of the Malaysian Parliament for Taib's party, PBB. The group controls 362'000 hectares of logging concessions and 313'000 hectares of plantation concessions in the East Malaysian state of Sarawak.

"All these concessions have been granted by Ta Ann chairman Hamed Sepawi's cousin without public tender. Ta Ann's wealth is thus entirely based on corruption and its chairman continues to be one of Taib's closest business cronies and allies." Apart from chairing Ta Ann, Hamed Sepawi is also head of Naim Cendera, a construction company that is benefitting massively from Sarawak state contracts, and chairman of Sarawak Energy, the state's power supply monopolist.

Last month, the British NGO Global Witness had criticized the WWF's partnership with Ta Ann despite the group's responsibility for large-scale logging in the Heart of Borneo, one of the WWF's priority conservation regions.


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Euro-Med Monitor: Sudan Military Coup Shatters Democratic Path, Threatens With Authoritarian Rule Return
The Sudanese army's seizure of power in the country diminishes the hard-won human rights and civil gains achieved after the December 2018 protests, Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor said today in a statement...More>>

Weather: Pacific Likely To Experience Double Dip La Niña Episode

The Pacific is likely to experience a rare occurrence of what is called a double dip La Niña in the coming months, Climate models and predictions tools used by Pacific National Meteorological and Hydrological services (NMHSs) show...

CNS: Will India's 1 Billion Vaccination-dose-milestone Be Catalytic For Vaccinating All?

On 21 October 2021, India crossed its milestone of administering over 1 billion (100 crores) doses within 278 days since it began the vaccination rollout (on 16th January 2021)... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs

Climate: ‘Vague’ Net Zero Promises Not Enough: Planet Still On Track For Catastrophic Heating, UN Report Warns

New and updated commitments made ahead of the pivotal climate conference COP26 in the past months are a positive step forward, but the world remains on track for a dangerous global temperature rise of at least 2.7°C this century even if fully met, a new report by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has warned... More>>

Pacific: Young Climate Leaders Call For Urgent Climate Action Ahead Of COP26

Eight Pacific Young Climate Leaders shared their experiences of climate resilience and activism in an inaugural dialogue with the Pacific Islands Forum Secretary General, Mr Henry Puna on 21 October 2021... More>>

UN: With Clock Ticking, Sustainable Transport Key To Global Goals
From electric cars and buses to zero-carbon producing energy sources, new and emerging technologies along with innovative policy changes, are critical for combating climate change. But to be effective, they must ensure that transport strategies benefit everyone, including the poorest... More>>