Number of hardcore poor households in Sabah reduced by 75%, says Hajiji

KOTA KINABALU: The Sabah government's aggressive efforts to eradicate poverty in the state have reduced the number of hardcore poor households by over 75%, says Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor.

The Chief Minister noted that the government, through its Sabah Maju Jaya (SMJ) Secretariat, has been providing employment opportunities to heads of households or their family members living in hardcore poverty.

This measure, which he referred to as a migration process, has successfully reduced the number of hardcore poor families in Sabah from 22,510 to 5,379, Hajiji added.

"The state government is determined to lift them out of poverty. We will continue this aggressive approach to end hardcore poverty in Sabah," he said at the state-level Maal Hijrah celebration at the Papar Community Hall on Sunday (July 7).

Head of State Tun Juhar Mahiruddin officiated the celebration, which also saw former legislative assembly speaker Datuk Seri Syed Abas Syed Ali named state-level Tokoh Maal Hijrah.

Despite his outstanding achievements, the former Sabah Islamic Religious Council (MUIS) president said the award was the highest recognition he had received so far.

Syed Abas received a certificate of appreciation, RM20,000 in cash as well as several other gifts presented by Juhar.

The 76-year-old completed his A-level Oxford Board education at Greenmore College and obtained a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Applied Economics from East London University.

One of his most notable achievements was leading a statutory body to increase gross collections from RM7.7mil in 2004 to RM32.8mil in 2010.

For his achievements and service contributions to Sabah, he was awarded the state's prestigious Seri Panglima Darjah Kinabalu (SPDK), which carries the title Datuk Seri Panglima.

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