(From left) Rosey, Dr Abdul Rahman and Hafriz release 25,000 Lampan Jawa fish fry into Sungai Sibuti at Kampung Rancha Rancha.
BEKENU: Kampung Rancha Rancha in Bekenu is poised to become the largest producer of fragrant Pandan coconut in Miri Division by 2022, said Assistant Minister of Agriculture, Native Land and Regional Development Datuk Dr Abdul Rahman Ismail.
The cluster coconut plantation scheme here is set to produce 32,000 coconuts monthly or 1,200 daily which could ring in tidy income to the 60 participants.
“One coconut can cost RM10 each at premium price in places such as Mulubut which are bought at farm price of RM2.50 each. It means participants can take home RM1,700 monthly income per acre,” he said.
The assistant minister informed this to participants during his working visit there, where he was surprised that the palms which were planted in the last quarter of 2018 were already beginning to show signs of fruiting.
The project leader Arbi Jukin remarked tongue-in-cheek that this was probably due to the villagers’ overzealousness in fertilising the plants monthly instead of once in three months as recommended by the Miri Agriculture Department officers who projected production by 2022.
Dr Abdul Rahman disclosed that the Agriculture Department will build a collection centre which would be ready in 2022 to assist farmers in marketing their products while it would also be looking into improving the farm roads and drainage to cultivate the remaining 30 per cent of the 40-hectare land.
The department undertook the site clearing and other farm inputs for the first four years while the participants are responsible for farm maintenance.
The assistant minister said the department will also be taking up the requests to repopulate Subis, Niah and Suai rivers in Subis district with the King prawn (Udang Galah) and hoped this could be started by December this year.
These much sought-after premium prawn species fetch a price of RM70 to RM100 per kg in the market.
Earlier, he and Assistant Minister of Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Datuk Rosey Yunus and Miri Division Agriculture Development officer Hadriz Razak released 25,000 Lampan Jawa fish fry into Sungai Sibuti at Kampung Rancha Rancha.
Dr Abdul Rahman said the state will be tapping into the potential of hydro-electric power dams in the state to boost fish production for export through commercial scale cage culture.
“We are already exporting Tilapia fish from Batang Ai, and Bakun lake is now suitable and this would be followed by Murum and later Baleh,” he said.
The assistant minister said this is line with the plan by the GPS state government to be a net exporter of food by 2030, with emphasis on development of agriculture, livestock and inland fisheries.
Meanwhile, he said the government had many plans to assist farmers in the state through various schemes and assistance programmes but continued support of the people is crucial in seeing through the various programmes and policies.
He said political stability and solidarity in the state under GPS is the way forward and the people should not be swayed by opportunists who would spring up when the state election is around the corner.
Rosey, he added, has done a fine job in serving the people of Bekenu constituency and deserves their support to continue her mission of raising their socio-economic standards apart from physical infrastructure development in the constituency.
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