KUCHING: Sarawak’s urban-rural ratio should hit 65:35 within a decade, says Housing Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg.
“Today, the ratio is at about 58:42. Fifty years ago, it was 30:70. The urban population is increasing, especially in Kuching, Mukah, Bintulu and Miri.
“There will be pressure on housing and on traffic, for instance,” Johari told reporters after handing over funds to non-governmental bodies.
Due to the higher number of job opportunities in the city, more people were opting to move from the rural area to the city.
“The availability of better education system is also one of the factors that draw people into the city,” he added.
However, some migrants experienced culture shock with the change of environment.
In order to address the problem, Johari urged NGOs to play their part, and provide community services like counselling.
The minister also spoke on education and employment issues, saying under-education led to job difficulties.
Funds have been provided to help the people moving to the city, especially around developing areas such as Petra Jaya, Batu Kawah, Kota Sentosa and Matang.
A total of RM690,000 has been allocated to 29 non governmental organisations. Recipients included RTM Recreation Club, Sarawak Bumiputra Teachers Union, Kolej Datuk Patinggi Abang Haji Abdillah, and others.