SIBU: Minister of Education, Science and Technological Research Dato Sri Michael Manyin Jawong has suggested that Dayak Bidayuh National Association (DBNA) Sibu branch apply for state land to start a Bidayuh village here.
Taking cue from Kampung Lusut Bidayuh in Miri, he said this was much better than the DBNA Sibu branch requesting to build a centre here.
“You see, we have one Bidayuh village in Miri – Kampung Lusut Bidayuh – where we started by asking the state government through the Land and Survey Department for a piece of land.
“A perimeter survey was carried out on the land, spanning about 250 lots. Each lot is about 20 points and now the whole area is already surveyed individually – (we are) only waiting for (land) titles to be given.
“Many have already built their houses there. That is why it is called Kampung Lusut Bidayuh. If they (DBNA Sibu branch) build a centre, then who is going to maintain it later on? And where are they going to get the money (for the running of the centre)?
“So, the best thing is to apply for state land – not for individuals but for a village. Then, they can individually build their own houses that will become a ‘Kampung Bidayuh’, representing the Bidayuh (community) in Sibu. That will be good and that is my suggestion to them (DBNA Sibu branch).
“On my part, I will help them apply for state land if they have identified the land. Of course, at the end of the day, when they have all been given the titles, they have to pay a premium but it will be very minimal,” Manyin told reporters from The Borneo Post and Utusan Borneo when met after officiating at the DBNA Sibu branch’s 32nd Pearl Anniversary Dinner here on Saturday.
Earlier in his opening remarks, DBNA Sibu branch chairman Jimmy Hendrick Kijan expressed his hope that the Resident Office could consider their request for community leaders with Manyin’s support.
He added that with community leaders, the Bidayuh community will be better organised and their welfare better looked after. That aside, he hoped the minister could support them as DBNA Sibu branch. being a non-governmental organisation (NGO), needs funding to carry out their activities.
Meanwhile, in his speech, Manyin dwelled at length on unity and the importance of education. He called on the Bidayuh community to be united in one heart and one mind to achieve unity of purpose. He urged them to continue throwing their support behind the government of the day.
Manyin stressed that for the Bidayuh community to move forward, it is of utmost importance that they place great emphasis on their children’s education.
“Please pay a lot of attention on the education of your children and grandchildren’s education as that is the way forward,” he said.
He also emphasised on the need for continuous reading to enhance one’s knowledge. The night was also enlivened by stage performances and lucky draws.