TAMBUNAN: Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan said a climbing trail would be built to the summit of the 2,050-meter Mount Minduk Sirung in the district.
“I was informed that last year, 698 people climbed Mount Minduk Sirung,” he said when launching the third anniversary of the Crocker Range Park as a Human and Biosphere Reserve (MAB) at the Mahua sub-station here, yesterday.
He believed the opening of the Mount Minduk Sirung climbing trail and efforts to promote it could benefit the local community around Mahua.
Pairin, who is also the Infrastructure Development Minister, said the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (Unesco) recognition of the Crocker Range Park as an MAB Reserve on 12 June 2014 was another step forward taken by Sabah Parks towards the protection of the park and at the same time enhancing the local community’s sustainable use of forest resources.
According to him, the listing of Crocker Range Park and its surrounding areas as an MAB will provide opportunities for international cooperation to enhance the management of natural resources and the environment based on three things as follows:
“Minimizing the loss of biodiversity; increase the level of community awareness on how culture and biological diversity will affect life; and promoting environmental continuity through international relationship network as an MAB Reserve,” he said.
Pairin, who is also the member of parliament for Keningau said for this purpose, Sabah Parks, through the cooperation of the government departments or agencies, together with the community around the Crocker Range Park had been carrying out various activities since being listed as an MAB in 2014.
“The recognition of the Crocker Range Park as an MAB has created a platform for us to make Tambunan district known internationally,” he said.
Pairin said this year was Visit Tambunan Year where various programs and areas to attract tourists had been promoted and introduced.
He said one of the tourist areas at Sabah Parks was the Taman Mahua sub-station, apart from the Alab Mountain Station, the Salt Route Trail and the Minduk Sirung Climbing Trail.
At the event, Pairin was briefed on the development of the Mahua sub-station by assistant director of Sabah Parks, Ludi Apin.
He also launched the climbing trails of Mount Minduk Sirung, witnessed the signing of MoU between the director of Sabah Parks, Jamili Nais with the District Council chairman and District Officer Thomas Logijin, and cutting the Crocker Range Park third anniversary cake.
Also present at the ceremony were Pairin’s wife Puan Sri Genevieve Kitingan, Infrastructure Development Ministry political secretary Welfredoline Jakil and District Chief OKK Philip Datuk Kitingan.