KUCHING: There is potential for Sarawak to collaborate with Singapore in the field of education and research to tap into the existing pool of talents in the state.
Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said that the idea came from Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, who pointed out that many talented Sarawakians have gone to work in Singapore and became citizens.
“Singapore has talent but not much natural resources. If we combine our natural resources with their talent, we would be able to develop our own pool of talents and strengthen our economy,” the Chief Minister said at a dinner here Saturday night.
Abang Johari urged Sarawakians, young and old, to keep up with technological development as it will not wait for anyone to catch up.
He was speaking during the Yayasan John Jinep gala dinner in conjunction with the launch of two books on young Bidayuh personalities – Pandelela Rinong Pamg and Dewi Liana Seriestha.
The books under the title ‘A Portrait in Words and Pictures’ are biographies of their career and life so far, published by Yayasan John Jinep to inspire other young Bidayuhs to create their own great journey.
“Both have excelled in their respective fields, bringing glory to Sarawak and the Bidayuh community. As with other Sarawakians, I am truly proud of their achievements,” said Abang Johari.
He added that Sarawak is blessed with a lot of young people with talent, but if that natural talent is not developed, then it is not utilised to the full. When interviewed by reporters before the ceremony, Pandelela said that her book contains stories of her earlier life and personal struggles in achieving her success as an Olympic medallist. She said that she is now focusing on recovery after sustaining injuries during the Asian Games 2018 in Indonesia.
“I will start training again at the end of this year for my upcoming competitions in 2019.”
Meanwhile, singer and model Dewi revealed that she finished recording her first English single, which she hopes will reach the international audience.
She added that she will still continue on the path set upon her by the Miss World pageant, pointing out that she does not plan on stopping just because her contract was over.
“Winning the Miss World Talent title makes me more keen on helping and encouraging women and children to believe in themselves and their career.”
Launched on Nov 15, 2015, Yayasan John Jinep is the first charity foundation established solely for the Bidayuh community. The main objective of this foundation is to give financial aid for education and welfare, with emphasis on education for poor and needy students entering public local universities for their first degrees.
Since its launching in 2015, Yayasan John Jinep has assisted 164 students from various Bidayuh communities in Sarawak from Lundu, Serian, Padawan, Penrissen, Bau and others in various disciplines including medicine, engineering and economics.