By Karen Bong
KUCHING, March 29: The state government has approved a total of RM11 million for Chinese education in Sarawak, with RM3 million for the relocation fund of SJK Chung Hua Bako and RM8 million for Chinese schools.
Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg announced this at the Association of The Boards of Management of Aided Chinese Primary Schools Kuching, Samarahan and Serian Division’s 35th anniversary cum fundraising dinner for the relocation of SJK Chung Hua Bako.
“The Sarawak government will give RM3 million to match the little over RM3 million already raised for the relocation of SJK Chung Hua Bako to Taman Berlian, Kota Samarahan,” he said at the dinner at SJK Chung Hua No 3, Jalan Padungan here on Friday evening.
Abang Johari joked that an entourage from the association led by president Jonathan Chai Voon Tok had paid a courtesy call on him (Feb 14) to present the “love letter of requests”.
The association managed to raise over RM3 million of the estimated budget of RM6 million required for the first phase of the construction project.
“I told them that if they can get a certain amount, I will give one to one. So now the cost (of construction) is settled already,” he added.
On top of that, Abang Johari pledged to continue the work of the late Chief Minister Pehin Sri Adenan Satem with the effort in helping Chinese schools in Sarawak.
“The past two years after I succeeded Tok Nan (Adenan), I have also increased the allocation for Chinese schools by RM1 million every year. Last year I gave RM7 million,” he added.
“So similarly this year, I will give an additional allocation of RM1 million to make it RM8 million in total allocation for Chinese schools in the state. So in total that’s RM11 million for Chinese education,” he explained.
Abang Johari also promised to speak to Kuching South City Council (MBKS) mayor Datuk James Chan about alienating the land where SJK Chung Hua No 3 now sits on, as it is currently renting the land from the council.
He reiterated that the state government had always emphasised on assisting schools, be it mission schools or venacular schools.
“It is important for us to nurture our human capital so we can move forward and develop our society,” he said.
Minister of Education, Science, and Technological Research Dato Sri Micheal Manyin Jawong, Minister of Local Government and Housing Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian, Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii, Batu Lintang assemblyman See Chee How were present among Chinese community leaders including organising chairman cum association deputy president Rodger Chan. — DayakDaily