New museum to facilitate high-level research, says Abdul Karim

Abdul Karim (second left) presenting the Sarawak Museum Journal to UiTM Sarawak Rector Professor Datuk Dr Jamil Hamali in the presence of Tazudin (left) and Hii (right) after launching the Sarawak Museum Journal and Sarawak Museums App at a hotel in Kuching today (Feb 10, 2021).

By Peter Sibon

KUCHING, Feb 10: The new Sarawak cultural museum which has not yet been officially named nor officially opened will be capable of facilitating PhD-level research, said Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Datuk Abdul karim Rahman Hamzah.

He stressed that research work is just as important to be carried out in the new museum as having the countless number of exhibits which are going to be displayed on site.

“That is the whole idea of having this Borneo Cultural Museum. It’s not just a museum which we are going to show exhibits only. The Borneo Cultural Museum will be a place to do research. That’s where we have the facilities. They (researchers) can stay here to do their research.

“(So)…it is not going to be a museum that is just for exhibits and for our culture (to be shared) but also as an institution for research purposes,” Abdul Karim told a news conference after launching the Sarawak Museum Journal and Sarawak Museums App at a hotel here today.

At the same time, he hoped that many locals will take up studies related to the state’s history, culture and heritage.

On the Sarawak Museum Journal, Abdul Karim said, it is a historical publication which begun in 1911 but had ceased publication in 2017 due to technical reasons.

“But I have full confidence in the quality of our journals, what has been produced before, partly because before we were not well connected, but now, everything is so close. You can reach out to others. Scholars or researchers from other universities who probably could contribute good articles for us to feed into these journals,” he said.

Abdul Karim said, apart from that, the editorial board would manage the journal to ensure that content quality is upheld.

“It just needs a little bit of getting together among them, reaching out to those are interested in their area, from the outside world whether it is from Indonesia, Thailand or from the UK or Netherlands, they can contribute,” he said, adding that for 2020, thirteen submissions for the journal have been received so far, while for this year, three submissions have been received.

On the Sarawak Museums App, Abdul Karim said it was implemented in line with the state’s policy of turning into a digital economy by 2025.

Also present at the function were permanent secretary to the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture Hii Chang Kee and Sarawak Museum Department director Tazudin Mahtar. — DayakDaily