Sarawak stepping in as Putrajaya seems to ignore education in the state — CM

Abang Johari (third from left) witnessing the handing over of the mock key from San Chin BBC-JV Sdn Bhd chairman Temenggong Datuk Barry Yek (second from right) to state Education Department deputy director Abang Mat Ali (second from left) as Deputy Chief Minister Awang Tengah Ali Hasan (left), Abang Johari’s wife, Datin Patinggi Juma'ani Tun Tuanku Bujang, and San Chin BBC-JV Sdn Bhd managing director Lee Chin Teck (right) look on.

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By Nigel Edgar

KUCHING, Nov 19: The Sarawak government has no choice but to intervene in education policies as the current federal government might not be as receptive as its predecessor and the needs of schools in the state, especially those in the rural areas, might be ignored.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said furthermore, the federal government had claimed that the country had a huge debt and might not have enough money to go around.

“But looking at the needs of our teachers, children and their schools, they need a good environment and facilities to have a good education.

“Not that we want to take over (federal matters and constitution). If we wait for Kuala Lumpur, it’s difficult. They said ‘no money’. Even if we ask, they might not give. What to do,” Abang Johari said at the key handing over ceremony of SJK (C) Stampin’s new school building here today.

As such, he approved the much-needed RM185,000 to the Parents-Teachers Association (PTA) of SJK(C) Stampin for education facilities in the new school building. He had earlier received a request letter from the school’s PTA with a list of things the new school building needed, including the amount needed.

San Chin BBC-JV Sdn Bhd chairman Temenggong Datuk Barry Yek (second from right) presenting a token of appreciation to Abang Johari. With them on stage are Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan (left) and San Chin BBC-JV Sdn Bhd managing director Lee Chin Teck.

Meanwhile, Abang Johari thanked the developer, San Chin BBC-JV Sdn Bhd, for building the RM17 million new SJK (C) Stampin after it was relocated to a new site nearby Jalan Tun Jugah following a land swap deal between the school and the developer.

The new school can now accommodate more than 1,000 pupils compared to the old one, which could accommodate around 780 pupils.

SJK (C) Stampin, Kuching.

“I also know that whenever we pass through this road (Jalan Tun Jugah) to the airport, especially during peak periods, that is morning between 6.30am up to 8am and then noontime as well as later in the afternoon, we were caught in a traffic jam in front of this school, so much so that we were left behind by MAS (Malaysia Airlines flight). I missed my flight once because of the jam,” said Abang Johari.

As such, when the government proposed and negotiated with the developer of Galacity — San Chin BBC-JV Sdn Bhd to build a new school through a land swap deal, the developer accepted the proposal.

“And today, you have a self-contained township because you have got the shops, houses, condominium apartments, recreational facilities as well as a new school building. And this is an example of a private sector-government initiative.

“I would like to thank the developer for their patience and concerns to provide good educational facility for our children,” he said. — DayakDaily