Uggah (left) stands with Abang Johari during a photocall.

BETONG: Sentiments on the ground accusing Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg of having marginalised the Dayaks are untrue, said Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas.

He said one would understand that the accusations made were false when reading and observing the policies and programmes implemented by the chief minister.

“Do not incite the Dayaks — we’ve had enough Dayaks who had been provoked,” he said in his address at the Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) Betong Zone special convention held at Dewan Tan Sri Stephen Kalong Ningkan here on Saturday (Sept 26).

Uggah, who is also PBB deputy president, said Abang Johari and the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) government had never marginalised rural people.

He said it was clear when looking back at the state budget from the year 2017 until 2020 which allocated large amounts of funds for rural infrastructure development such as roads, bridges, electricity and water projects and other basic amenities.

“For example, in the 2019 budget, a total of RM9.073 billion has been allocated. Of the total, RM6.049 billion or 67 percent was for rural development.”

He said this continues with the 2020 state budget which allocated RM9.891 billion in total.

“Of the total, RM6.597 billion has been allocated for development where RM4.141 billion or 63 percent were specifically for rural development in the first thrust.

“This also includes RM5.192 billion for water and electricity projects RM5.145 billion for bridges, RM797 million for the agricultural sector, and RM40.5 million for repair of dilapidated schools,” he added.

Uggah also noted that Abang Johari knows the importance of solving land issues in the state, adding that the chief minister realises the importance of land to the Bumiputeras.

“He (Abang Johari) had decided to amend the Sarawak Land Code to defend Native Customary Rights (NCR) lands and to recognise the concept of Pulau Galau and Pemakai Menua.

“He realised that NCR landowners want their lands to be surveyed. Thus, he allocated RM40 million for the purpose of NCR land surveys,” said Uggah.