Pairin to meet reps on SDC implementation
Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Joseph Pairin Kitingan will be meeting with elected representatives of the interior constituencies to discuss the implementation of the Sabah Development Corridor (SDC) at the mid sub-regional level. The constituencies in this area comprise Pensiangan and Keningau parliamentary as well as the Tambunan, Keningau, Tenom, Nabawan, Pensiangan, Sook and Kemabong state constituencies. Pairin who is also the Rural Development Minister, said among the important steps to be taken in developing the mid sub-region under the SDC is to strengthen Keningau’s role as the main ‘agropolis’. “During the meeting, the elected representatives can give and exchange ideas and views as well as point out what needs to be given priority and serious attention,” he said at a thanksgiving celebration held at Kampung Ronggom here recently. According to Pairin, it is the Government’s and people’s wish to see development in the interior area as this will ensure that residents there will be able to enjoy all benefits from the country’s progress and prosperity. Focus, he said, will be given to improving the income of rural folks by getting local folks involved in agriculture activities and the setting up of a support system for farmers such as infrastructure, collection and research centres. “To ensure SDC’s success, leaders and the rakyat must work together by supporting the implementation of SDC as well as contributing ideas and proposals to ensure that it reaches the target groups,” he said. The people, he added, must also not be solely dependent on the Government for the success of SDC and pointed out that grassroots leaders can ensure SDC’s success by providing information on the potential in the areas as well as what is lacking in terms of infrastructure. “This is important so that problems can be addressed by those responsible for the planning and implementation of the SDC,” he said, adding that this way, agencies responsible for the implementation can build infrastructure according to the needs of the target groups. “All this while we have allowed the planning unit to focus on developing the urban areas which is why we need the input of those in the rural areas as this is necessary in the planning of development for them.” he stressed.