Sunday, September 25

Semarak Tani Keluarga Malaysia to help fishermen, livestock breeders, farmers

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Ronald (right) presenting a prize to a winner of the cooking competition held in conjunction with the programme.

BELURAN (Sept 22): The Semarak Tani Keluarga Malaysia programme here can be a platform for the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industry (MAFI) to promote the welfare of the fishing community, livestock breeders and farmers in rural areas.

Its minister, Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee, said through the activities carried out throughout the programme, the local community had the opportunity to receive various exposures, especially involving aid and funds provided by departments and agencies under Mafi.

According to him, even though Mafi has been implementing many programmes for a long time, it had not been able to go down to the ground often, therefore the Semarak Tani Keluarga Malaysia programme can be of assistance.

Ronald said through the Semarak Tani Keluarga Malaysia programme, he could see the overall effectiveness of each activity and programme provided by MAFI to the three communities concerned.

“We have received a lot of feedback from fishermen, farmers and livestock breeders to continue improving programmes implemented by the ministry so that they can continue to benefit the community.

“Through this programme today, we gathered the agro-food community in rural areas and we are not stopping here and will continue to go down to the ground to meet with the local community, especially the fishing community, farmers and livestock breeders throughout the country to ensure the effectiveness of the programme developed by the ministry,” he said after a get-together with the fishing community in the district.

Earlier, Ronald launched the fishing boat parade at Jeti Anjung Muara Beluran.

The flotilla of fishing boat that made up the parade.

He added that in order to ensure the continued protection of the welfare of fishermen and farmers in this district, MAFI will add one Persatuan Nelayan Kawasan (PNK) in Paitan and another Pertubuhan Peladang Kawasan (PPK) in Telupid.

The addition of the PNK and PPK is now in the process of being established as the Beluran parliamentary constituency is a large one and its vast area had resulted in some fishermen and farmers being left out of benefits provided by the ministry.

“Therefore, we hope that the increase in the number of these associations for the Beluran district, will ensure that the welfare of the fishing community and farmers is looked after,” he said.

Ronald, who is also Beluran Member of Parliament, lamented that many residents in areas surrounding Beluran town have not yet benefited from subsistence allowance because there are conditions to be met such as being a member of the association, having a fishing license and registering as a recipient of subsistence allowance.

“All of this needs to be done administratively to ensure that those in these groups benefit. With the new PNK and PPK later, more farmers and fishermen will be able to be monitored closely and be able to enjoy the benefits of the MAFI programme.

In addition, he explained, MAFI will also continue to cater to rural communities, not only in the Beluran parliamentary constituency but also other rural parliamentary constituencies throughout the state.

At the event, a total of 200 fishermen involving 100 boats from 32 villages participated in the fishing boat parade starting from Kampung Air and Keramat to Anjung Muara Jetty.