Sarawak must stop dependence on foreign labour from Indonesia, says Abg Jo
Posted on : 13 Jun 2022  Source of News: The Borneo Post

Abang Johari (third right) and his wife Puan Sri Datuk Amar Juma’ani Tun Tuanku Bujang visit the Gawai Raya stalls.

MIRI (June 13): The state cannot be too dependent on foreign labour from Indonesia, said Premier of Sarawak Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg.

He said this is because Indonesia is also in the stage of development requiring workers, particularly with the move of the country’s capital from Jakarta to Nusantara.

“Many projects have been approved but when it comes to implementation, the price of goods goes up and there are no workers. Even the Pan Borneo project is also facing a shortage of workers,” he said during the Lambir Gawai Raya Gathering 2022 and launching of Phase Two PICC Taman Jelita Off Taman Tunku here last night.

“Our employment is there but our manpower is not enough, this becomes our problem. The project is running but slow due to not enough workers. We can vary construction materials, if it goes up, we can increase the order variation.”

He said those in the oil palm industry are also complaining about a shortage of workers.

In view of that, he urged Sarawak’s young people to improve their skills in technology by undergo training at the Centre of Technical Excellence Sarawak (Centexs).

Abang Johari added it is timely for young people to develop projects by using technology so that technology can replace manual labour for certain jobs such as in oil palm estates.

“There is nothing wrong if we use a new way to manage the oil palm estate by using technology such as tractors and sensors. Do not depend on Indonesia as the archipelago is also building,” he said.

The Premier also approved seven people’s projects worth around RM24 million for Lambir constituency during the event.

They are the RM5 million Phase Three Project Integrated Community Centre (PICC) Taman Jelita Off Taman Tunku, RM6 million new tamu market for Taman Tunku, RM3.5 million mosque for the 20th Battalion Royal Malay Regiment at Sri Miri Camp, additional funds for St Bernadette’s Church construction at Bekenu Junction, multipurpose hall – including badminton and basketball courts – for Miri airport housing areas, as well as 25-door longhouse for Rumah George Sirai, and 27-door longhouse for Rumah Morris.

Deputy Minister for Youth, Sport and Entrepreneur Development II (Entrepreneur Development) and Lambir assemblyman Ripin Lamat had requested the projects.

On Ripin’s request to upgrade the single carriageway from Lambir to Sepupok Niah into a dual carriageway, Abang Johari said he totally agreed with the proposal as the existing road was too narrow for the area.

He said he would get the Public Works Department (JKR) to give him more details on the project, including estimated costs.