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By Nancy Nais
BALAI RINGIN, Dec 7: Local handicraft entrepreneurs here can foresee better tourism prospects to elevate their skills and income soon.
Revealing this, Balai Ringin assemblyman Datuk Snowdan Lawan disclosed that a new RM300,000 Balai Ringin handicraft centre is currently in the making, starting with landscape which includes a lake that was recently approved and tendered out by the Sarawak government.
The centre which is located right at Simunjan junction comes under the Rural Transformation Project (RTP).
“We are working together with Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) where they will build a lake to compliment the landscape.
“Once the whole project is complete, this handicraft centre will not only serve as a visitors’ destination when they drive past Balai Ringin, but also be a platform for entrepreneurship development among the local craft communities,” Snowdan told the villagers during ‘Randau Ruai GPS’ event in Kampung Spaoh Raba, yesterday.
Snowdan, who is also Assistant Minster of Youth and Sports, further explained that the Sarawak Craft Council (SCC) will assist as well in buying from them on wholesale so it can be sold to other places such as Peninsular Malaysia or Singapore.
With a handicraft centre in Balai Ringin, he opined that apart from ensuring the continuity of local talent and skills, people living in rural areas can benefit greatly especially as a means to develop their overall socio-economic status.
Meanwhile, 14 Village Security and Development Committee (JKKK) and its Women’s Bureau received their respective Minor Rural Project (MRP) cheques amounting to RM146,000 from Snowdan.
At the same event, he also graced the opening of the RM250,000 Tr Sadong Jepit multi-purpose hall and presented certificate of appointment to five community leaders (ketua kaum).
Touching on community leader’s responsibility, Snowdan reminded the penghulu, pemancha, ketua kampung and tuai rumah that each of them were given certain power to act on their responsibilities, including the need to lodge police report if needed be.
He warned them against being used by the opposition to spread lies and disunite the people.
“You are the eyes, ears and mouth representing the government. You are acting as a bridge between the government and the people.
“Never allow any opportunities for the opposition to come in, step over your head, disunite us just so that they can take over the Sarawak government through their lies and propaganda. You have to be firm on this,” Snowdan said. — DayakDaily