Poor awareness, socio-economic status hampering Orang Asli children from receiving education

Last update: 09/09/2019

ALOR GAJAH,  Sept 9  -- Lack of awareness and low socio-economic status are factors which hamper Orang Asli children in the country  from getting good education, said Orang Asli Development Department director-general  Prof Dr Juli Edo.

He said basically, there was increasing awareness among the Orang Asli community on the importance of education, but not in terms of providing education for their own children to ensure they could enjoy better life in future.

Hence, he expressed the need to emphasise not only on the importance of education  among Orang Asli parents, but also for them to ensure their children get to receive proper education to enable them to change their standard of living and socio-economic status.

“Most Orang Asli parents are still struggling to earn a living to support their families that the education aspect of their children is neglected.

“The effort to ensure more Orang Asli children get education should not be left to the government alone, but also other quarters, such as parents, chieftain and the Orang Asli Village Management Council  (MPKKOA)," he told Bernama here recently.

Juli said the chieftains and MPKKOA members in the Orang Asli villages should be more active in their efforts to enhance the community’s awareness  on the importance of education.

If possible, they should go from house-to-house  to ensure the Orang Asli children in their area had the opportunity to receive education provided by the government, and to resolve whatever the problems, if they did not, he added.

Meanwhile, Juli advised the Orang Asli community to work hard for their own self-development and to reduce their dependence on others, especially the government.

They should be independent and only then can the Orang Asli get out of the poverty status, he added.

Meanwhile, recipient of the Melaka Orang Asli Youth award, Haznizam Jasdi, 24, from Lubuk Bandung Orang Asli Village, Simpang Bekoh, Jasin, acknowledged the importance of education to improve the socio-economic standard of his family.

Hasnizam, who graduated from Universiti Teknologi Mara Seri Iskandar, Perak, with a Diploma in Town and Regional Planning, said with knowledge, one’s life can be better and more systematic.

“I’m now taking over the construction company set up by my rubber-tapper father and am also running a banana plantation, as well as rearing goats and cows,” he added.

The third child of  Jasdi Ah Kin, 50, and Rosni Bah Anding, 47, Hasnizam said he had been able to provide 10 employment opportunities for the locals through his businesses.

-- BERNAMA