KUCHING: The Sarawak Land Consolidation and Rehabilitation Authority (Salcra) has opened another mill to process fresh oil palm from its estates.
The mill at the 25th kilometre of the Bau-Lundu road, which is Salcra’s fourth, was opened by Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud yesterday.
Salcra has 12,071ha of oil palm estates in the Bau and Lundu districts.
The RM34mil Bau Palm Oil Mill (Bapom) has the capacity to process 40 tonnes of oil palm an hour, and can be doubled in the future if necessary.
It will also process oil palm produced by privately owned estates and smallholders in the area.
Taib said the mill was an example of the state government’s “politics of development” which involved the participation of all races in economic activities.
“The politics of development is the most suitable approach for multi-racial development in Sarawak.
“Encouraging more participation in the national and state economy must be our aim, so there will no longer be any inter-racial jealousy or bitterness,” he said.
Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Alfred Jabu said Salcra had declared dividends of RM20mil, to be paid out to its 14,000 participants this year.
He said 60% of the dividends would be paid out before the first school and university semester begins next year. The rest would be distributed when the second semester starts.
This would ensure that Salcra participants make use of their dividends for their children’s education.
“We have a moral responsibility to ensure that Salcra participants, who mostly come from villages or longhouses, will invest their dividends in their children’s education, whether by sending them to school or to further their studies,” Jabu said.
He later handed over donations of RM15,000 each from Salcra to the Sarawak Association for the Welfare of Orphans, the Sarawak Society for the Blind and the Sarawak Cheshire Home.