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KUCHING, Sept 15: A total of nine religious organisations within the Batu Kitang constituency received grants totalling RM475,000 from the Sarawak government through the Unit for Other Religions (Unifor) today.
Batu Kitang assemblyman Lo Khere Chiang revealed that the nine organisations comprising eight churches and one temple were St Margaret Church in Kg Betong Landeh (RM20,000), Immaculate Conception in Kg Sudat (RM50,000), Sacred Heart Church in Kg Semeba (RM50,000), St John De Brebeuf Church in Kg Tematu (RM50,000), Gereja Injil Sepenuh in Kota Sentosa (RM10,000), St Maria Church in Kg Bumbok (RM100,000), Gereja SDA in Kg Bumbok (RM50,000), Gereja Seventh-Day Adventist in Kampung Semeba (RM100,000) and Persatuan Penganut Agama Buddha Amitabha Ming De (RM45,000).
The handover of funds was done together with Unifor assistant director Elder Ambrose Linang.
Sarawak had set up Unifor to assist religions other than Islam as the state government believes that Sarawak’s resources belong to its people of all faiths.
Unifor is currently looking after 16 different non-Islamic religious groups, including Christians, Buddhists, Hindus, Sikhs, Bahai’s and Taoists.
“Our communities in Sarawak are lucky to have Unifor because we are unique given that this is the only state having such a unit. With Unifor, we get to enjoy peace and harmony in the state, and it would be further enhanced to allow unity in the foundation for continuous development.
“Sarawak is moving forward because of its racial and religious harmony and unity which we pledged to respect. As our Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said, Unifor is a unique feature of Sarawak’s social and religious understanding not found anywhere else, that others wanted to adopt,” Lo highlighted in a statement.
He pointed out that Unifor is the only official government agency in Malaysia that looks after the needs of non-Muslims, reflecting Sarawak’s priorities regarding inclusion and diversity.
“I sincerely thank the state government for adopting an inclusive approach to multi-religious Sarawakians in assisting all houses of worship and religious organisations with the Unifor grants. I urged our fellow Sarawakians to continuously put their trust in Abang Johari to govern Sarawak so that the welfare and needs of Sarawakians are always fairly taken care of,” Lo added. — DayakDaily