11 kindergarten buildings too dilapidated to be used

KUCHING: Ministry of Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development identified 11 dilapidated kindergartens in the state that need to be replaced.

Minister of Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Datuk Fatimah Abdullah said this at a press conference after a meeting with Community Development Department (Kemas) officers in Masja, Petra Jaya yesterday.

“In the first phase, we consider 11 schools among the 109 dilapidated schools (in Sarawak) on the priority list in terms of brokenness and with no land available, temporary occupation could be sought at community halls, long house ‘ruai’ (balcony) or renting,” she said.

The 11 schools are Tabika RH Serit Kapit, Tabika RH Pillai Kapit, Tabika RH Tunjang Sg Lelabi Sarikei, Tabika Selangan Sarikei, Tabika RH Jamba Kapit, Tabika Kpg Sagah Petra Jaya, Tabika Sg Malikat Marudi, Tabika Manok Machal Kapit, Tabika Kpg Ampungan Puncak Borneo, Tabika Kpg Banting Lawas and Tabika Kpg Sg Tapang Stampin.

She said her ministry would present the ‘dilapidated Tabika’ list to the state government and propose state intervention.

“This matter is under the federal list. The problem has been existing for a long time and we cannot wait for federal fund anymore. We propose the state government comes out with funding first, and we claim from federal government later.”

She said after gathering the building design and costing, she would present the proposal in this December state cabinet meeting.

She said the federal government allocated only RM480,000 to the state which is only enough to repair and maintain seven schools.

“Waiting for federal fund will take long. How can we allow our children to study in that kind of situation? Those schools are not conducive for learning as the building is unsafe. We must make sure the physical condition is safe, environment comfortable and school a place the children want to go to and learning is fun,” she said.

According to her, in Sarawak this year, there are 1,540 Tabika and 81 Taska (nursery), 21,139 pupils in Tabika and 1,168 children in Taska.

She thanked representatives who repaired and built schools using the Minor Rural Project fund in their constituencies.

Also present were Permanent Secretary to Ministry of Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development, Dr Saadiah Abdul Samat and Kemas Sarawak acting director Dayang Monalizawati Abang Ismail.

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