Key Australian executive leaves Sarawak dams program
The Bruno Manser Fund has learned from reliable sources that Australian national Andrew Pattle, one of the key staff seconded to Sarawak by Hydro Tasmania under a staff secondment program, has left the Taib government's controversial dams program last month.
Pattle was the senior project manager of the highly controversial Murum dam, which is currently under construction, and until recently described himself as "Senior Project Manager for the proposed Baram and Baleh dams". In April 2012, he participated in a controversial "miring" ceremony held at the Baram dam site to "bless" the proposed dam.
Pattle's personal linked in account says, as of 1st December 2012, that he is now Hydro Tasmania's "Principal Engineer - Civil and Dam Safety di Hydro Tasmania". The linked in entry also says that Pattle was until recently "Senior Technical Manager - Hydro Projects di Sarawak Energy Berhad" and "Senior Project Manager - Baram1 Hydro Electric Project di Sarawak Energy Berhad".
Interestingly, Pattle's Curriculum vitae as presented on linked in directly contradicts a press release issued by hys employer Hydro Tasmania last week. Hydro Tasmania CEO Roy Adair said on 27 November 2012:
âHydro Tasmania is not involved in flooding rivers and displacing indigenous people. We are not providing consultancy services on the Baram Dam project. A simple check of the facts with us would have established that.â
So who is lying, Andrew Pattle or his boss Roy Adair?
The Bruno Manser Fund interprets Mr. Pattle's hasted departure from Sarawak as an indication that Hydro Tasmania's employees are starting to feel the heat from an increasingly successful international campaign against the Sarawak dams program. Last week, Sarawak Chief Minister Taib Mahmud said in an interview that the NGO campaign against his dam program was "economic sabotage". Taib Mahmud is currently under investigation for corruption by the Malaysian Anti Corruption Commission, MACC; many of the dam contractors are closely linked to the Taib family.
The Bruno Manser Fund calls on all expats and consultants working in Sarawak to follow Mr. Pattle's example and dissasociate themselves from Taib's detrimental dams program. Key foreign staff with Sarawak Energy include Norwegian nationals Torstein Dale SjÃ¸tveit and Einar Kilde as well as the Australians Miles Smith, Graeme Maher, James Hannon and Nick Wright.
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