KUCHING, Nov 9: Some 22 boat operators (‘penambang’) in Bintulu and Sibu Divisions have received the RM500 one-off financial assistance cheques under the sixth Bantuan Khas Sarawakku Sayang (BKSS 6.0) today.
Minister of Transport Dato Sri Lee Kim Shin said the 12 recipients from Bintulu and 10 from Sibu were among a total of 199 registered boat operators in Sarawak eligible for the aid.
Under Region I Kuching covering Kuching, Samarahan, Serian, Sri Aman and Betong Divisions, there are 131 recipients.
In Region II Sibu including Sibu, Sarikei, Mukah and Kapit Divisions, there are 10 and in Region III Miri covering Bintulu, Miri and Limbang Divisions, there are 58 eligible boat operators.
Altogether, the stimulus package for boat operators in 2021 incurred a total cost of RM99,500, which was a repeated wave of provisions following the same expenditure of RM99,500 for also 199 boat operators in 2020.
“As spelt out under BKSS 6.0, there are 15 measures introduced by the State government (on May 28) to assist Sarawakians during the Movement Control Order (MCO) period.
“In this respect, measure number five is on a RM500 one-off financial assistance to each penambang registered with Sarawak Rivers Board (SRB),” said Lee in a statement today.
Meanwhile, he said his ministry through SRB is continuously engaging with residents and boat operators of each respective division to monitor the development of riverine transportation services.
It was also the ministry’s hope that the riverine transportation industry in the State could operate at full capacity in the near future.
“In this regard, I urge all relevant parties especially the riverine transport operators as well as riverine transport users to give full support and cooperation to the government to curb the spread of Covid-19 by following strictly the SOP published by State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC), National Security Council (MKN) and Ministry of Health (KKM) in the interest of all Sarawakians.” — DayakDaily