The Ibans caught between tradition and fire safety

Amendment to by-laws on longhouse design considered

The Sarawak government will consider amending the by-laws regarding construction of longhouses.

According to Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg, the matter should be studied first as it requires the feedback and acceptance from the rural longhouse communities.

He also points out that the amendments are considered to prevent fires, which often strike longhouses, in that the construction of every new longhouse must be in compliance with the set standard.

We see that we may have to amend the existing act and the by- laws under the council, which may be mandatory.  But we cannot force such construction because we do not know if there’s any acceptance by the population, as every longhouse’s construction is a tradition. – CM Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg

It is known that Sarawak Building Ordinance (SBO) 1994 serves to regulate the implementation, development and construction of any extension to any building; and they must not be undertaken without the written approval from the local authorities.

Abang Johari said the amendments should also be examined not only by law, but also with reference from the Fire and Rescue Department before the construction of any building.

According to him, Sarawak has a standardized design for the construction of a new longhouse that includes the installation of a fire wall too, but this has not been made mandatory.

It is observed that there are longhouses, including one in Baram, that use the standardised design.

“There are some who follow the design, where they have empty space in the central section before the kitchen area; some do not follow it because it is not mandatory,” he said.

Earlier, Abang Johari declared the closing of the ‘Satok Community Fire Programme 2018’, where he was accompanied by Fire and Rescue Department Sarawak director Khirudin Drahman.

Source: The Borneo Post

New longhouse concept latest design unseen, Rh. Chabu hopes for a Santa Claus from Datuk Amar Abg Jo

A series of seminar was organised in April 2011 throughout the state to explain to the pre-selected elderly Dayak communities on the new longhouse concept. The youth were left out from the carefully selected audience, hence the outburst in the social media to disagree with the new longhouse design. The concept remains blurry on the design.

An assistant minister was quick to rebuke any hidden agenda behind the new concept. Dayak internet users disagreed with the design. The land title issues were raised up during the seminar by the pre-selected audience.

Today, despite the assurance from Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg on available funding, Rh. Chabu have yet to see any pillars being erected. The year 2011 is coming to an end, and 2012 is coming soon.

The design of the longhouse build under the New Longhouse Concept can be view here.

The villagers at Rh. Chabu is looking forward to a Christmas gift from Santa Claus Datuk Amar Abang Johari! Ohh by-the-way, we demand to see the latest design – the modified ones. Or a hidden agenda was really there of a different kind?

Construction Of New Sarawak Longhouse Concept To Begin This Year

KUCHING, July 8 (Bernama) — The construction of the new longhouse concept will begin this year with a village in Bakong, Miri, identified for the implementation of the pioneer project, said Sarawak Housing and Urban Development Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg.

“The site survey is now underway and we have the funds to finance the construction of the new longhouse concept,” he told reporters after receiving a courtesy call from Pertubuhan Belia Kebangsaan Sarawak (Saberkas) exco members led by its secretary-general Aidan Wing at his office on Thursday.

Abang Johari said one of the unique features of the new longhouse concept was the availibility of ownership title that had been absent from the existing old longhouse.

“It will allow the owners to mortgage or refinance,” he said, adding that it would make it easier for Sarawak to bid for more funds from the federal government to build more affordable homes, including the longhouse, in the Tenth Malaysian Plan (10MP).

He said the state government decided to proceed with the pioneer project despite criticism and resentment from certain parties because it would benefit those staying in the longhouse in the long run.

As it’s a pioneer project, we don’t expect it to be 100 percent perfect. We will listen to all the feedback and rectify the weaknesses, so that the new concept will be accepted by all quarters concerned,” he said.

On the housing tribunal, Abang Johari said the old State Legislative Assembly building had been picked to house the tribunal.

“The renovation will include the setting up of a chamber and as of now, we have received many complaints to the tribunal for further action,” he said without elaborating.

On the latest allegation of rape of Penan women in Baram, he questioned the motive of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) which highlighted only the Penan community.

“Why only highlight the Penans? Why don’t they also highlight the rape cases in urban areas and come up with a solution,” he said.  — BERNAMA

Land mines disposal unit at work

Anything about Native Customary Land (NCL), it is categorized as a land mine in Sarawak. NCL issues are not favorable to the politicians as far as their career is concern. Most of our representatives will avoid question on these issues – it is sensitive to them, and if they answer it, it will be a general statement.

The next couple of months we will be reading news about the new concept for longhouses, and obviously, YB Datuk Amar Abang Johari and YB Dato Sri Douglas Ugah are in the mines disposal unit send by the government to defuse these land mines so that the candidates for the coming state election will have a safe and clear path to victory. So much internal politicking (I guess so)..

Apa kata you tek? U salah petik bom depan kena, salah toleh bom kiri kena.. tangar ajak YB dua orang ya.. kedak mine disposal unit. Tapi nei tau juak.. jangan jangan boleh jadi KM dan Timbalan KM yang baru. Sik impossible kan? Ewaahhh!