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RM2.2 million for preserving cultural heritage
Published on: Thursday, February 29, 2024
By: Ricardo Unto
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RM2.2 million for preserving cultural heritage
Hajiji beating the gong to officiate the festival while others look on.
Tuaran: The Federal Government has approved an allocation of RM2.2 million this year to develop two projects aimed at preserving and protecting Sabah’s cultural heritage, said Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor.

He said the two projects - the State Integrated Cultural Mapping System Development and the Old Welfare Services Office Building Restoration Study - were approved under the Mid-Term Review of the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP).

“RM2 million was allocated for the State Integrated Cultural Mapping System Development project while the Restoration Study of the Old Welfare Services Office Building project involved an allocation of RM200,000,” he said when officiating the Sabah Bajausama Cultural Festival, here, Wednesday.

He said the mapping project aims to modernise Sabah’s ethnic cultural information management system, which is in line with the Government’s Digitisation Plan.

“The restoration study will involve reconstructing a historic building – the British North Borneo Chartered Company (NBCC) Office, which was destroyed by fire.

“This initiative also aims to conserve and protect historical sites and buildings, besides being an important cultural art gallery in Sabah. 

“Both projects are new and tasked upon the Sabah Cultural Board.”

Hajiji also said the Government made various efforts to boost the number of tourist arrivals to Sabah, which is expected to reach three million this year.

He said aside from arts and culture, tourism products such as community-based tourism is a segment of eco-tourism that increasingly receives attention from various levels of the local and international community.

He also urged ethnic group associations in the State to continue to develop and uplift ethnic culture and community-based tourism products in their respective areas, in addition to working together to empower and preserve Sabah’s ethnic cultural heritage.

“Sabah’s uniqueness and diversity of heritage, ethnicity, culture and race is an essential asset as a tourist attraction and needs to be preserved and protected as a symbol of the State’s refinement,” he said.

Hajiji, who is also Sabah Bajausama Association (PRBSS) President, hopes the Sabah Bajausama Cultural Festival, which has been going on for four days since last Sunday, will become a platform for conserving cultural treasures in the State.

“It also aligns with the festival’s objective – to preserve and uplift traditional culture and strengthen ties among locals.

“This festival, which has already been included in the tourism calendar, is not only attended by Bajausama communities but also enlivened by all levels of multiracial society,” he said.

He said the festival is also a medium to attract the young generation’s interest to get involved in various Bajausama artistic and cultural events.

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