KUCHING: The old Sarawak State Legislative Assembly (DUN) building will once again become a landmark after it is transformed into a Centre of Performing Arts.
Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said the centre will be a boon to the local creative and arts industry.
“I personally wish to see the local arts industry continue to be developed and we want to see Kuching as a city with a soul.
“Through the renovation of the old DUN building, it will complement our efforts in achieving these aspirations,” he said in a blog post on Wednesday.
On Tuesday, Abdul Karim who is also the Youth and Sports Minister attended a dialogue session in discussing the development of arts in the state.
The minister said a contractor had already been identified to undertake the renovation works on the building at Petra Jaya but works were dampened by the Covid-19 pandemic causing delays in the project’s completion.
“Through the assistance of higher learning institutions and art schools, we hope there would be regular performances at the Centre of Performing Arts once the project has been completed.
“In the future I do hope tourists can spend a day at the Centre of Performing Arts of world-class standard appreciating the arts and cultural heritage of our state, apart from visiting other attractions that are available here,” he said.
Abdul Karim said the Sarawak Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry has extended its fullest support to the arts industry players to further promote their craft and achieve a higher level of success, including through financial support.
“I have also advised our local arts performers to contribute to Social Security Organisation (Socso) for them to enjoy benefits offered as a social safety net.
“This is because most of them are not contributors to the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) like their counterparts in the public and private sectors,” he said.