Cultural Heritage Ordinance amendment to include underwater heritage

Some 200 participants attended the conference.

By Brad Rantay

MIRI, Sept 26: A Bill to amend the Sarawak Cultural Heritage Ordinance 1993, to strengthen efforts in preserving and protection of heritage in the state, will be tabled in the next State Legislative Assembly (DUN) sitting.

According to the state Museum acting director Suria Bujang, the Bill will clarify and enhance the role of Sarawak Museum Department director once it is passed.

“The amendment will include three new components namely underwater heritage, the Heritage Council and the Heritage Trust Fund,” he said at the opening of the International Conference On Archaeology 2019 – Promoting Archaelogy as Heritage Tourism, here, today.

About 200 participants from Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, Brunei, Australia including from across the country attended the three-day conference that ends Saturday.

The opening of the Sarawak Museum Complex next year would pave the way to achieving this goal, said Suria, whil adding that the new museum will become a must-visit place for visitors to Kuching.

“It will be a repository centre and showcasing Sarawak’s rich cultural and historical heritage through its exhibitions,” he pointed out.

He added that the complex will become a centre for learning, knowledge and research through collaborations with local and international agencies and institutions.

The conference, showcasing a total 18 speakers from seven countries, presents a wide range of topics revolving archaeology.

National Heritage Department commissioner (Heritage) Mesran Mohd Yusop, in his keynote address, lauded the state’s effot to enhance the preservation and protecting of heritage sites.

“It also help uplift and gear economic activities towards the tourism industry by promoting cultural sites as one of the popular tourist sites.

“In addition, it can be used as a medium to disseminate information on tangible an intangible heritage and to instill awareness among public,” he said.

Mesran added that efforts are being made so that Niah National Park in Miri would be nominated as a Unesco World Heritage Site after Lenggong Valley in Perak.

“The recognition is proof of Malaysia’s commitment towards the conservation and preservation of national heritage, including Cultural Natural Heritage (tangible and intangible).

“To date, the total gazetted list for heritage items under National Heritage (Warisan Kebangsaan) is 751 and Heritage (Warisan) is 229,” he said. — DayakDaily