Spaoh may export “ikan buntal”

Uggah (second left) presenting a mock cheque of RM5,000.00 to the manager of the Barracuda team which won the regatta race at Pesta Buntal.

SPAOH, Aug 25:  Yellow puffer fish (Xenopterus naritus) or commonly known as “ikan buntal” can be Spaoh’s potential food export and tourism product.

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah said the Batang Saribas has been well known for the fish during its spawning season from June until September.

He said the pufferfish is a very special fish which requires careful preparation to remove the deadly poison in its blood vessels and egg membrane.

“But the locals here can do this very well.  In Japan, the fish is a specialty dish and people are ready to pay a lot of money to taste it at high end restaurants,” he said when officiating the annual Pesta Buntal or Pufferfish Fest at Kampung Manggut here today.

Uggah (second right) with Mohammad Razi (second left) and Robert (centre) scooping pufferfish from a tank to symbollically launch the Buntal Fest.

Uggah suggested for a study to be carried out to ensure the long term survival of the fish.

“We have to know its spawning areas along the Batang Saribas so as not to disturb such spots or remove the sand there.

“If we could do these and a long term supply is ensured, we could develop the fish as a unique food and tourism product,” said Uggah.

Meanwhile, Uggah took the opportunity to announce an allocation of RM30,000 for the festival committee. Betong MP Datuk Robert Lawson Chuat topped up with another RM30,000 while Saribas assemblyman Mohammad Razi Sitam added on another RM25,000.

Uggah also launched the Gabungan Parti Sarawak(GPS) Saribas branch during the festival.

He cautioned the people against the presence of outsiders entering the area to discredit GPS government and to disunite the people with their selfish propaganda.

The highlight of Pesta Buntal – the regatta.

Uggah reminded them that GPS was formed to protect Sarawak’s rights and wealth as well as to chart out and expedite Sarawak’s own development plans and programmes.  

Uggah later presented prizes to winners of the regatta event which is the highlight of Pesta Buntal. — DayakDaily