State government promoting durian planting to develop rural areas

Uggah (wearing blue Batik) poses in a group photo with other VIP guests and representatives of the participating villages.

MIRI, August 18: The state government is committed to improving the lives of rural farmers through agricultural activities, including the planting of durians, said Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas.

He said the RM100 million allocation given to the Ministry of Modernisation of Agriculture for the 2018-2019 period was clear testimony of the government’s seriousness in this matter.

Launching Mardi Gras Lambir 2018 at Kampung Tuanku Abdul Rahman in Lambir this morning, Uggah told those present that the government was keen on durians as it was a money spinner.

To ensure this particular industry developed systematically, durian collection centres would be set up and the services of a company from Johor would be engaged to plant and supply durian seeds — including the `musang king’ variety — to the state, which currently only has about 300,000 old durian trees.

“The company will assist us in purchasing durians statewide,” he said.

Last November, the state exported 16 tons of durian paste to China, and it was a historic moment as it was the first time Sarawak managed to export such a big amount.

Some of the participants seen fully dressed in their traditional attire.

At the event in Lambir, Uggah announced that Sibuti, Marudi and Piasau would be given RM500,000 each to boost durian planting activities.

More than 300 people in traditional costumes from Miri, Sibuti and Marudi participated in the 2.5km Mardi Gras Lambir 2018 procession this year. This was second time it was held in Lambir to promote understanding and unity among the different races.

Among those present were former Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfred Jabu Numpang, Assistant Minister of Local Government Datu Dr Penguang Manggil, Piasau assemblyman Datuk Sebastian Ting, Sibuti MP Lukanisaman Awang Sauni, Lambir assemblyman Ripin Lamat and organising chairman Pemanca Wilson Siang. — DayakDaily