Abdul Karim: Federal govt will address Sarawak’s data privacy concerns with Padu

Abdul Karim (centre) holds up promotional material for Samarahan Food and Cultural Festival at his Ministry's office on April 5, 2024. Also seen are Rubiah (left) and Peter.

By Karen Bong

KUCHING, April 5: The Federal government has undertaken measures to improve the national Central Database Hub (Padu) by taking into consideration Sarawak’s concerns regarding data privacy.

Minister of Tourism, Creative Industry and Performing Arts Dato Sri Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah stated that while it is inappropriate for him to divulge details prior to the Economy Minister’s announcement, he emphasised that Putrajaya’s actions demonstrate sensitivity to Sarawak and its citizens’ views and suggestions.


“Something is being done to improve it. The Prime Minister (Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim) did mention to the Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg, a few things that were being done when he was in Kuching recently.

“So we will wait for the Economy Ministry to disclose it as it is not proper for me to do so. But it is reassuring that our concerns and worries are being looked into by the Federal government. It is something very good as the government should listen to the views and suggestions of the citizens,” he said after a press conference on Samarahan Food and Cultural Festival at his Ministry’s Office in Baitulmakmur Building today.

Previously, Abdul Karim has expressed his personal opposition to Padu’s collection of excessive confidential or sensitive information, likening it to “stripping citizens completely naked” of confidential data.

While Padu registrations closed on March 31, Abdul Karim noted an increase in registrations, as those who did not register will still have their basic data automatically entered into the system.

“We will leave it to Padu’s initiators to devise solutions, but it’s imperative that highly personal data isn’t mandated for Padu,” he added.

Chief Statistician Datuk Seri Mohd Uzir Mahidin highlighted that Padu’s data storage facilitates the Statistics Department’s analysis, census activities, and government aid distribution. Moreover, it aids in formulating policies tailored to people’s needs.

Furthermore, Economy Minister Rafizi Ramli reportedly plans to meet with the Sarawak government this month to address Padu-related concerns.

Deputy Minister of Rural and Regional Development Datuk Rubiah Wang and Kota Samarahan Municipal Council (MBKS) chairman Dato Peter Minos were among those present. — DayakDaily