SCHOOLS in Sarawak are facing an acute shortage of Iban language teachers, says a leader of the community.
Sarawak Dayak Iban Association (Sadia) permanent chairman Munan Laja said primary schools were short of 2,100 such teachers while secondary schools needed 26 of them.
“Since the intake of new teachers has been frozen for 2022 and 2023, I request Education Ministry to address this issue,” he said at a Sadia dinner.
He is also appealing to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to look into the said issue, aside from the need for special firefighting unit to be established in every longhouse in Sarawak and the setting up of a special fund for Dayak entrepreneurs.
Explaining the need for the firefighting unit, Munan said there were frequent fires at longhouses.
“From 2015 to 2020, a total of 121 longhouses were destroyed by fire.
“Therefore, I propose to the government to establish a special firefighting unit in every longhouse in Sarawak.
“There are a total of 5,000 longhouses in the state,” he said.
On the request for a special fund for Dayak entrepreneurs, he said it was to assist them to further develop their lands.
“The Iban people possess ample land, including Native Customary Rights (NCR) land, but we lack capital.
“Therefore on behalf of Sadia, I humbly request a special fund for Dayak entrepreneurs who have land but need capital to develop their ventures,” said Munan.
Chan Ming Kai, political secretary to the Prime Minister and was representing Anwar at the dinner, said he would relay the matters to the latter.