Thursday, August 13

206 acres for Sarawak Botanical Garden

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KUCHING: The state government has reserved 206 acres of landscaped area in Jalan Astana here as the site of Sarawak Botanical Garden.

In disclosing this, Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem said with the contribution and collaboration from everyone, the greenery in the area, which was part of a former police training centre and home to some unique species of flora in Sarawak and Borneo, could be preserved.

“This site will become one of the sustainable networks of green spaces in Kuching city that can be turned into an area for recreational activities and be another landmark as well as attraction for tourists to Kuching,” he said in his speech at the launching of National Landscape Day 2016 at the old State Legislative Assembly Complex here yesterday.

Adenan’s speech was read out by his deputy Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfred Jabu. Also present was Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan.

Adenan expressed his gratitude to the Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Ministry for its commitment to provide allocations for the development of Bintulu Municipal Landscape that would be built this year, and the development of Core

Garden for Sarawak Botanical Garden.

“In this context, we are very hopeful that the development of this Botanical Garden would be able to be implemented according to the Sarawak Botanical Garden Masterplan that has been pursued by the

Kuching North City Commission (DBKU), with the allocation and technical cooperation from Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Ministry through National Landscape Department.”

He said the efforts by the state government to realise the Botanical Garden that would be the pride of the state, should be welcomed by all parties.

“I also welcome contribution from various parties be it the private sector, non-governmental organisations or individuals for the development of plants collections, preparation of facilities and garden furniture in the botanical garden.

“Besides that, contributions and volunteer activities for daily maintenance of the botanical garden are also welcomed.”

Similar to botanical gardens in other countries, Adenan believed that an attractive botanical garden could not be developed in a year or two, but would take years and required passion as well as commitment.

He noted that the allocation and technical cooperation from Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Ministry through National Landscape Department had enabled the local councils in the state to come up with their landscape masterplans to develop and upgrade public parks, improve municipal green areas and living environment.

“I was made to understand that since the Seventh Malaysia Plan to 10th Malaysia Plan, a total of 140 landscape projects with a total value of RM79.06 million had been implemented for the public through the commitment.

“I hope that this effort will be continued in line with the increasing population.”

Meanwhile, Abdul Rahman praised the state government for maintaining the natural landscape and doing a good job in managing landscape construction in urban areas.

“The state government had reserved an area of 206 acres of landscaped area in Jalan Astana under DBKU to be Sarawak Botanical Garden. On the federal government’s part, we have approved an allocation of RM10 million for this purpose and we hope this botanical garden will bring benefit to the people of Sarawak.

“But that is only at the federal level, I also know that a lot had been pursued by the chief minister since he took office two years ago. The federal government is always supportive and stands by the chief minister for the sake of a more developed and competitive Sarawak.”

Among those present at the National Landscape Day 2016 launching were National Landscape Department director-general Esa Ahmad, Kuching North (DBKU) mayor Datuk Abang Abdul Wahap Abang Julai and Kuching South mayor Dato James Chan.