Sahril (left) handing back the Biperoh Association Kuching Centre to its president Mangan, witnessed by Jerip (fourth right) and Effareza M (right).

KUCHING: The upgrading works on the RM750,000 Biperoh Association Kuching (BAK) Centre at Kampung Garung, Jalan Puncak Borneo is finally complete despite a slight delay due to movement control order (MCO) in March this year.

Assistant Minister of Transport Datuk Dr Jerip Susil witnessed the handing over of the building by Public Works Department (JKR) senior executive engineer Sahril Matnoor to BAK’s president Mangan Ngandok.

The contractor of the project, A.E.Legacy Constructio,n was represented by its manager Effareza Mohamad.

“I urge BAK exco members to plan community, economic and cultural activities at the centre, adding that the centre should benefit the association and the community,” he said in his speech today.

On the association’s requests, Dr Jerip said he will continue to provide the funding next year to complete the centre which will including building a ‘panggah’ (a Bidayuh ceremonial house) and the Biperoh’s style longhouse in the third phase.

He commended BAK’s initiatives and plans to open the centre for monthly market to enables members to sell their jungle produce and other products here, adding that the Biperoh women’s wing can also hold their activities at the centre.

Dr Jerip, who is also Mambong assemblyman, added that he has and will utilise his RM5 million yearly Rural Transformation Programme (RTP) fund for infrastructure and economic transformation in his constituency, not just in the Biperoh’s area but also in other places.

“I hope the people in Mambong constituency continue to cooperate with the government to ensure smooth implementation of infrastructure and economic projects in their areas,” he said.

He said land owners should be willing to allow their land to be taken up for farm road access, adding that more farm roads need to be constructed so that land owners could open their land for economic activities.

Mangan in his speech said the centre was built at the total contract cost of RM750,000 for two phases.

He said RM250,000 was from the late Datuk Seri James Dawos Mamit and RM500,000 from Dr Jerip under his RTP fund.

“The association still needs fund for fencing and grill, and hope Dr Jerip would continue to fund the project,” he said.

The Biperoh, one of the Bidayuh clan with an estimated population of more than 15,000, are residing in 10 villages in Penrissen and Padawan along the Borneo Heights Road.