KOTA KINABALU: Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Jaujan Sambakong hopes the Land and Survey Department will carry out a study at the squatters areas in Sabah to see if they are eligible to be gazetted as ‘kampungs’.
He said that some of the squatters in Semporna, for example, had existed even before Sabah attained her independence and he hoped the study can be carried out speedily.
Jaujan said among the districts with the highest squatters colonies in Sabah are Tawau, Semporna, Lahad Datu and Sandakan.
He also noted the rampant occurrences of fire breaking out at these squatters areas and said that it could be because of illegal electricity connections since residents of these squatters areas are not supplied with legal electricity supply.
“Squatters are not eligible to apply for electricity and water supply, only if the areas are gazetted as kampungs, then they would be eligible. That is according to our ordinance,” he explained to the press after the Sabah Legislative Assembly sitting yesterday
Jaujan also mentioned the need to convert the waste collected into energy for Sabah.
He said waste management incurs huge expenditure for Sabah, stating that for the Tawau municipality alone, the cost of waste management is RM500,000 per month or RM6 million per year.
“There is a need to raise the awareness of the people with regards to waste management, since improper waste management can lead to the occurrence of diseases that will have adverse impact on human health. Improper waste management is also one of the reasons for the presence of stray dogs,” he said.
On the recent incident involving a dog that had its mouth chopped off, Jaujan reminded the community that dogs were also living creatures.
He said they were working with the Sabah Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the Sabah Wildlife Department to address the matter.