LAWAS: The federal government should put aside politics in the interest of education of the younger generation in Sarawak and respond to its written offer to undertake urgent infrastructures and facilities upgrading and repairs.
Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan said while education is a federal matter but Sarawak cannot stand idle on the urgent need to undertake upgrading and repairs of dilapidated schools and provision of permanent supply of utilities in the state.
Awang Tengah (back row, third left) accompanied by Henry Sum (back row, second right) presenting a mock voucher to a teacher from one of the 31 recipient schools in Lawas.
We have written to the ministry of education of Sarawak state governments offer to fund RM1 billion to upgrade and repairs of 31 dilapidated schools and RM 50 million to connect schools to state grid system but the state has not received any decision or reply until now, he said.
Awang Tengah said this when officiating the presentation of the presentation of Sarawak Foundation educational aid vouchers to 428 out of 882 recipients from 35 primary and secondary schools here today.
Awang Tengah, who is also Minister of Urban Development and Natural Resources and Minister of Industrial and Entrepreneurs Development, said the offer of these funding from the state was premised on reimbursement by the federal government later.
Expressing disappointment over politics in education, he said certain schools in the state which are close to the local reticulated water distribution system were not connected while some students were prevented from attending education related function such as the function in Lawas.
Politics must take a back seat as overriding consideration should be providing conducive environment for education of our children, which the state government takes very seriously as indicated by our Chief Minister (Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg) in making this offer of funding, he said.
The state government has been assured by the previous Barisan Nasional (BN) government of funding up to RM1 billion for upgrading and repairs of dilapidated schools in the state prior to the 14th General Election on May 9, this year.
Pakatan Harapan (PH) toppled the ruling BN coalition innate first change of federal government since the country achieved Independence in 1957, and the fledgling new government has introduced a slew of changes and slashed many approved projects on grounds of lack of national coffers.
Also present at the function were Lawas MP Datuk Henry Sum Agong, Limbang Resident Ir Ahmad Denny bin Ahmad Fauzi, Lawas district Officer Ladin Atok, Sarawak Foundation representative Jolly Merikan, community leaders and others.
Borneo Post Online