Abang Johari presents an endowment fund to a recipient.

MIRI: The Sarawak government has agreed to allocate RM10 million as part of its initiative efforts to train more teachers to be proficient in English to enable them to teach Science and Mathematics in the language.

This was revealed by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg after the launch of Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) Zone 13A for N 71 Bekenu and N72 Lambir at Bekenu basketball hall, yesterday.

“Because there were no funds or allocations provided by the Ministry of Education Malaysia for the purpose, so the state government chips in as we are aware of the importance of the English language in the teaching of Science and Mathematics subjects,” said Abang Johari.

With the initiative, Sarawak would be the first State in Malaysia to fully implementing the teaching of Science and Mathematics in English.

“We do not want such thing (lack of funding) to dampen our spirit to further develop our education system for the future generations,” he pointed out.

Abang Johari presents an endowment fund to a recipient.

Abang Johari also said that the RM10 million allocation (by the state government) is meant for this year.

He hoped that with such initiative, the students’ proficiency in the English language will improve.

Education Minister Dr Mazlee Malik during a recent meeting with Abang Johari had conveyed Prime Minister Tun Mahathir’s intention to reinstate the teaching of Science and Mathematics subjects in English.

“I said, ok no problem. Sarawak can implement it anytime,” he said in his opening address at the event which saw more than 3,000 people present.

Abang Johari also reminded Sarawakians to stand united and avoid splitting their communities or party.

“Stand united we must, regardless of our ethnicity to protect our rights as Sarawakians. And avoid any split amongst us,” he stressed.

He added that as the chief minister for Sarawak, he is not the leader for the Malays only, but other races as well.

Therefore, he called on the people of Sarawak from all walks of life to rally behind him and together fight for Sarawak rights.

On another matter, Abang Johari also emphasised the importance of power -sharing amongst the various races in the state.

“It (power-sharing) is an important principle of a country’s democracy, unlike those on the other side (referring to Malaya). They have many political parties which are fighting each other. We in Sarawak are far better because we are able to blend together in peace and harmony.

“Unlike those (leaders) from the other side (Peninsular Malaysia), Sarawak leaders are more matured and well trained in leadership.

“Our leaders (in Sarawak) are aware of the sensitivity of the various races. We do not scramble for no apparent reason,” he said.

He added that despite the peace and harmony Sarawak is currently enjoying, Abang Jo once again reminded the people to be wary of any element attempting to destroy our unity and to prevent Sarawak from being taken over by ‘outsiders’.

“Outsiders are aware that we (Sarawak) are rich in resources … it’s like still water runs deep, …there are ‘crocodiles’ awaiting to ‘snatch’ the unity that we have, so do not think that there are no crocodiles because the water is calm,” he advised.

At the event Abang Jo also presented a grant for RM5,000 to a kindergarten and endowment fund to recipients in Bekenu.

Also present were Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan, Women, Family and Childhood Development Assistant Minister Rosey Yunus, Law, State-Federal Relations and Project Monitoring Assistant Minister Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali, Tourism, Arts and Culture Assistant Minister Datuk Lee Kim Shin, SUPP sec-gen Datuk Sebastian Ting, PRS vice-president Majang Renggi, Anthony Nogeh Gumbek of PDP, Sibuti MP Lukanisman Awang Sauni, Lambir assemblyman Ripi Lamat and former Sibuti MP Datuk Ahmad Lai Bujang.