Friday, August 12

Seberang Hilir villagers to relocate to Darul Hana starting Aug 1

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Dr Abdul Rahman fields questions from reporters. – Photo by Muhammad Rais Sanusi

KUCHING (May 12): Residents of Kampung Panglima Seman and Semarang will be relocating to a new settlement under the Darul Hana Relocation Scheme in August.

Deputy Minister of Utilities and Telecommunications (Utilities) Datuk Dr Abdul Rahman Junaidi said over 80 per cent of applicants from the two villages were assigned a lot each based on a draw and were satisfied with the offer.

“The first batch will be relocated on August 1,” he told a press conference on World Tree Planting Day in Taman Botani Sarawak near Wisma Bapa Malaysia here yesterday.

He also said that charges for the electricity connection under Bantuan Khas Sayangku Sarawak in 2020 would be subsidised by the state government.

“As of now, subsidy for the connection charges remain. The government has yet to announce any changes to the scheme, and so the subsidy will be continued through the Additional Late Applicant Fund (ALAF), which is being implemented by the Ministry of Utilities and Telecommunications.

“Based on my estimation, the Sarawak government has forked out over RM40 million for the subsidy scheme as part of efforts to assist the community, especially rural folk, to ensure everyone has electricity supply from the main grid,” he said, adding the government had spent over RM20 million in the first year and RM20 million in the second year.

He added the government would bear the cost of electricity connection worth RM5,000 for each eligible resident under the subsidy.

“For connections worth RM5,001 to RM7,000, a discount of over 70 per cent will be given to the residents,” he said.

On the World Tree Planting Day programme, which was done together with Kuching North City Commission (DBKU), Dr Abdul Rahman said this year’s edition involved planting over 50 belian, gaharu (Agarwood), fig and kapur (Borneo camphor) saplings.

“The programme is part of DBKU’s initiative in restoring and preserving the rainforest in Sarawak while encouraging the public to participate in the meaningful event.

“Taman Botani is chosen due to its strategic location and size of about 206 acres in the vicinity of Kuching Waterfront, State Legislative Assembly and Astana,” he added.

DBKU Datuk Bandar Datu Junaidi Reduan, Malaysia Nature Society (MNS) Kuching Branch chairperson Rose Au Nyat Jun, research director of Malesiana Tropicals Dr Timothy Hatch and MNS community member Solomon Hii were among those present.