Niah National Park nears Unesco World Heritage status: Final decision in July

Len Talif (second right) and wife (right) receiving guests during their Raya open house on April 13, 2024.

By Karen Bong

KUCHING, April 13: The application process for Niah National Park to be inscribed as a Unesco’s World Heritage Site has reached its final stage, with a decision set to be made in New Dehli in July of this year.

Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Urban Development Datuk Len Talif Salleh disclosed that his recent trip to Paris involved a preliminary meeting with the executive committee representing 50 countries under Unesco.

“At the final decision level in New Dehli, nominations from 50 countries worldwide (for Niah National Park) will be considered for listing under the Unesco World Heritage,” he told reporters at his and wife Datin Asiah Aweng’s Hari Raya Aidilfitri open house at their residence in Demak here today.

While acknowledging that there are no guarantees, Len Talif however expressed optimism given the progress made and necessary actions taken to facilitate the nomination process.

“I believe the journey is promising and bright towards attaining the global recognition,” he added.

When Niah National Park is successfully inducted as World Heritage Site, it will be the second Unesco recognition for Sarawak after Gunung Mulu National Park in 2000.

The Archaeological Heritage of Niah National Park’s Caves Complex, Sarawak, Malaysia has been nominated for Unesco’s 2024 World Heritage Site under the mixed category for natural and cultural heritage.

The International Council of Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), an advisory body to the Unesco, conducted an evaluation mission on Niah National Park, from Sept 29 to Oct 4, 2023.

Among those who visited to extend their Aidilfitri greetings to Len Talif and family include Deputy Minister of Public Health and Housing Datuk Penguang Manggil, Meradong assemblyman Datuk Ding Kuong Hiing , Petros Group chief executive officer Janin Girie, and Sarawak Lawn Tennis Association president Dato Patrick Liew. — DayakDaily