KUCHING: The role of the Sarawak Dayak National Union (SDNU) remains crucial in ensuring that the Dayak community would not be left behind as the country steadfastly moves towards high-income status.
Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri Douglas Uggah Embas, who said this Saturday, reminded SDNU the important role it needs to play in ensuring that the native community here would not miss out on the economic and human capital development opportunities.
“It would be really sad if the a big portion of Dayak is being left behind in the country’s economic development. If we all cooperate, practise the concept of ‘Kita Boleh’ (we can) with the help of SDNU, I’m sure that by 2020 we will all be able to celebrate the success of all communities.
“I call upon SDNU to work out a programme, play its part without fear or favour but with a clear objective to upkeep the continuous solidarity of the Dayak,” said Uggah, who is also Betong MP, when officiating at SDNU Golf Charity and Executive Committee Installation Gawai Dinner held at the Christian Ecumenical Centre here as the guest of honour.
Also present were SDNU president Tan Sri William Mawan, who is a Senior Minister, and deputy president Kapit MP Datuk Alexander Nanta Linggi among the 500 crowd in attendance.
Uggah also advised, all relevant bodies to continue talks and discussions on all issues pertaining to Dayak development. Being the highest-ranking Dayak official in the government, he highlighted that he was prepared to play his part as the ‘office boy’ (in highlighting Dayak issues to the Federal Government).
He added the Dayak must combine their energies and resources to resolve problems of the community while ensuring the development of the Dayak.
Highlighting the development of the Dayak people remains as top priority for the government, Uggah cited the on-going Government Transformation Programme based on the 1Malaysia concept.
“The 1Malaysia concept is to ensure that the people of all economic development of the races, regardless of religion, political affiliation and geographical location will not be left behind in development but would benefit from the government’s transformation programme.”
Touching on the rural transformation programme where the government has invested almost RM4 billion in Sabah and Sarawak, he said this was to ensure that the East Malaysian states would improve on its infrastructure where roads, water supply and electricity reach the whole of the two states.
Uggah explained how Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak had formed a cabinet committee for the Bumiputera of Sabah and Sarawak after the government realised that the natives of the two East Malaysian states were lacking in development
Among the issues that had been brought up was the native customary rights (NCR) land. In its aim to improve the economic development of the natives of Sabah and Sarawak, some RM80 million had been allocated for the NCR land perimeter survey initiatives.
““There are lots of skepticism government’s on this issue but we will continue to explain the government’s stand. At the moment, the initiative is going well and we hope to continue until it is completed.”
Uggah also revealed that RM3O million has been earmarked for the Native Court, which he described has been long withstanding.
On the number of years where no Dayak made it to the Federal Public Service Commission (PSC), he reminded that recently a former state administrative officer Isaka Kana has been officially appointed to the PSC.
(Source: The Borneo Post, 18 June 2012)