News & Updates

Promoting tourism through photo contest

Tawau: Photographs are one of the best methods to enhance public awareness on environmental conservation, said Green Tawau Action Committee (GTAC) spokesperson Dr Wong Jia Lih.

“One of the contributors for the State’s economy is tourism, but if we fail to protect the environment, it will affect the sector,” he said during the closing of a photography competition.

The competition themed “Sabah’s Natural Beauty”, participated by 32 photographers from Kota Kinabalu, Sandakan and Tawau, was organised by the Tawau Photographic Society (TPS) and GTAC.

The competition, Wong said, would help create a sense of appreciation among the public on the environment, including foreign tourists.

“The availability of cheap airfares and tourist-friendly infrastructures will enable Sabah to continue witnessing an influx of tourists who are attracted to our flora and fauna.”

On GTAC, he said, the body promotes efforts to make a greener Tawau through tree-planting programmes with the cooperation of non-governmental agencies and schools.

“The body led by Larry Koh @ Rahim Abdullah has managed to plant more than 6,000 trees since 2012 along Jalan Apas,” he said.

Meanwhile, TPS Chairman Ho Lee Ngiew commended GTAC’s huge contribution through the competition, especially in introducing Sabah to the world through photographs.

“This is in line with the efforts of promoting Sabah tourism through interesting photographs of our flora and fauna,” he said.

Source : Daily Express

Sabah economy takes flight

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah’s economy is gaining traction with the increasing number of tourist arrivals at Kota Kinabalu International Airport (KKIA) here, says Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai.

The Transport Minister said between January and August this year, tourist arrivals at KKIA stood at 5.3 million as compared to 4.7 million in the same period last year.

“This is an increase of more than 13%, a double-digit growth that is impressive by any measure,” he said after opening the state MCA annual general meeting yesterday.

Liow said his ministry was prepared to engage more airlines to use KKIA to fly more tourists into the state.

He said Sandakan airport was also being upgraded to complement KKIA.

“The runway is being extended from the current 2.1km to 2.6km at a cost of RM80mil.

“This will enable the airport to accommodate wide-bodied aircraft such as the Boeing 777 or Airbus 330,” he said.

Liow, who is also MCA president, said the Federal Government, through his ministry, was also doing all possible to make Sepanggar Port more efficient as part of its long-term measures to reduce costs of goods in the state.

MCA deputy president Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong, who was also present, said the Government was responsive to concerns of Sabahans such as scrapping the unpopular cabotage policy, paving the way for the port to be “busier than ever”.

“Sepanggar is now essentially an open port and this will help to drive Sabah’s economy,” Dr Wee added.

Recently, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced the scrapping of the policy that limits the shipment of goods from the peninsula to Sabah and Sarawak to only Malaysian-flagged ships, effective June 1.

The 30-year-old policy has been blamed for the higher costs of goods in Sabah.

However, the policy will still be applicable to cargo shipping operations within Sabah, Sarawak and Labuan.

Dr Wee said the Opposition had spoken out against the policy when it was in place but then voiced its disagreement when it was being removed.

He said as such, Sabahans should be wary of their tactics which were mainly to stir up the people’s emotions.

“Their leaders claim to want to protect the rights of Sabahans but they have shown time and again that what they say and do are two different things,” he said.

Source : The Star

Young Sabahan promotes local food through social media accounts

KOTA BELUD: A business graduate here has turned to social media to promote exotic and traditional dishes in Sabah.

Pison Jaujip, 33, said traditional food was a part of Sabah’s native people’s identity and that it was important to share the information with others.

“I created a social media account under the name of ‘Ropuhan Di Tanak Wagu’ to share new and improved local tradition recipes with fellow Sabahans.

“It is also to convince them that our local produces are on a par with imported goods,” he said, adding that the meaning of the username is “kitchen for a young man” in Kadazandusun language.

Pison started posting about traditional delicacies on his website, Instagram, Facebook and Youtube since last year.

Among the photos he shared were tuhau (pickle wild ginger), bambangan (wild mango), butod (sago worm), kodop (fungus), and bee larvae.

Despite being busy with his business in selling local rice, Pison finds time to obtain raw ingredients from the forest or oil palm plantation.

He also likes to go to the tamu, or weekly market, here as it gives him the opportunity to exchange information about traditional food with the people there.

“I have been cooking and preparing traditional food since I was a child.

“I have fond memories of helping my grandmother to make bosou (fermented river fish with pangi/keluak and rice),” he said, adding that his favourite dish was the fish soup cooked with bambangan.

Pison also posted videos on his social media accounts, sharing recipes of tuhau-flavoured mayonnaise, tuhau fried chicken, sambal liposu, sago crepe with banana and even tapai (rice wine).

“For now, people from Sabah and Sarawak are very supportive (of what I have been doing). There are also many visitors from peninsular Malaysia asking about the ingredients for my recipes.

“I hope through social media, I could generate more interest and exposure locally and abroad on Sabahan cuisines and raw ingredients.”

Pison’s perseverance and passion in promoting local foods have recently started to bear fruit.

He had the oppprtunity to film with a local television to showcase food, such as bambangan soup, grilled salted fish, brinjal and local banana and corns, at a campsite here.

He was also invited as a guest exhibitor at several food festivals in the state to demonstrate cooking and promote local dishes to more people.

Source: New Straits Times

Firm, UMS to develop village into tourist attraction

KOTA KINABALU: Kampung Tambisan could become the next major tourist destination in Sabah.

Tambisan Travel and Tours Sdn. Bhd. managing director Antin Ismail said the village in the interior of Lahad Datu boasts rich flora and fauna, which was what inspired him to promote localsˇ way of life and culture.

¨I think the activities carried out by locals in Kampung Tambisan can be developed into a tourism product.

¨With the involvement and positive acceptance of the community towards the importance of tourism, we have decided to help develop the industry in Kampung Tambisan,〃 he said in his opening address at the letter of intent signing between Tambisan Travel and Tours Sdn. Bhd. and Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS).

In addition to raising awareness on the role of tourism in preserving and conserving the environment, the collaboration is also to implement community-based tourism in Kampung Tambisan as well as to provide a guideline, he added.

UMS Faculty of Business, Economics and Accountancy Dean, Associate Professor Dr Raman Nordin, said community-based tourism was a form of sustainable tourism that could positively impact the lives of locals and improve socio-economy.

¨I believe with cooperation from the local community, Tambisan is able to succeed in the project and serve as an example to other community-based tourism models in other places,〃 he said.

Dr Raman also expressed hope for a stronger collaboration such as through a memorandum of understanding, so that all parties can benefit from the initiative.

Source: Borneo Post

Sabah gets kudos for protecting forests

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah has earned kudos from being the best state in preserving and protecting the forests. Academy Science Malaysia (ASM) Senior Fellow, Tan Sri Salleh Mohd Noor said the Sabah government has done the right thing to protect the state’s forests.

“The continuous protection of the forests in Sabah shows the strong commitment given by the government.

“With its rich biodiversity, Sabah is a unique state that has set examples to others on the aspect of forest conservation and protection,” he said at a lecture on ‘Forestry in Global Climate Change’ at Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) here yesterday.

Salleh said that the strong cooperation among the parties concerned has seen the protection and conservation of Maliau Basin, Imbak Canyon and Danum Valley.

According to him, the environmental and global changes would occur if population increase and climate change with the loss of biodiversity along the way.

“When natural disaster strikes, destruction will occur and mostly it is the doing of mankind, as the environment has been compromised,” he said adding that it was mankind who will suffer in the end.

On a larger scale of environment destruction, many people would be displaced.

Other factors that will affect the environment is the rise in the use of fossil fuel unless it is changed, he said. In the end, mankind has to strike a balance between protecting and conserving the environment, and yet can go about in their daily activities.

Salleh said that it would be a constant challenge between human development and environment protection. “We must look into development that is needed and important without jeopardising the environment that will have long-lasting effects on the future generation,” he added.

The lecture was organised by the Science and Natural Resources Faculty and Human Resource, Arts and Heritage Faculty.

Source: New Sabah Times