Sabah drafting five-year plan for development

KOTA KINABALU: The new state government is formulating a five-year development strategy.

The new plan, dubbed “Sabah Maju Jaya”, would outline a realistic and comprehensive plan for the state, said Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor after receiving a briefing on the draft by the Sabah Public Service Department (JPAN).

The development plan will be launched after obtaining views from stakeholders.

A statement from the Chief Minister’s Department said that among those present at the briefing were State Secretary Datuk Seri Safar Untong, JPAN director-general Datuk Rosmadi Sulai and all permanent secretaries to state ministries.

Separately, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Dr Joachim Gunsalam said Sabah’s rural areas were in urgent need of better broadband coverage not only for education purposes but for daily communication.

Joachim, who is also Industrial Development Minister, said good and effective broadband coverage in rural Sabah was important for students, especially those in higher learning institutions requiring online lessons due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The problem of Sabah’s poor Internet access was again highlighted when eight students trying to find better connection were injured when a hanging bridge collapsed in Kampung Gusi, Ranau.

He said he had brought up the matter to the attention of the Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah.

The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission is now in the process of providing broadband service to the village.

Joachim appreciated the swift action taken by the Federal Government through the Communications and Multimedia Ministry.

He also thanked Hajiji for giving priority to Kampung Gusi where three telecommunication towers would be built under the National Digital Network.

On Sunday, Joachim visited the site of the collapsed 150m hanging bridge in the village and assured villagers it would be rebuilt.

The bridge is an important link for villages to ferry their produce to markets across the river. They are currently using small boats to cross the river.

In the incident, eight students were injured and one of them was admitted to Queen Elizabeth Hospital. The others have recovered.

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