The Sarawak government is set to make July 22 a public holiday in recognition of those who helped fight for independence from British rule in 1963.
Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem, in announcing this at the launching of Sejiwa Senada programme yesterday, said the assessment rates for residential properties in the state would be reduced.
“The state Cabinet would convene a meeting to discuss on the two matters. Before July 22, I will announce them,” he added.
Adenan said the reduction of the assessment rates was to lessen the people’s burden in view of the increasing cost of living.
On the coming state elections, Adenan said Datuk Fatimah Abdullah would defend her Dalat seat and Yussibnosh Balo would be the candidate for Tellian, which is a new seat. Newcomer Abdul Yakub Arbi would stand in the Balingian seat.
Yussibnosh, 50, is Balingian assemblyman, a seat which he won following the retirement of Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud who became the Head of State. Abdul Yakub, 56, is the walikota (chairman) of Mukah-Dalat district council.
About the increase of 11 state seats, of which nine of them are in the rural areas, Adenan said “the development gap between the urban and rural areas is very wide. We want to narrow it down.”
He added that about RM1bil was needed for state projects with emphasis on rural areas.
“One of the ways to implement more development for the rural areas is to have more state seats. Take the case of Tellian as an example, I purposely did it so that the people who are Melanau will have their own representative.”