KOTA MARUDU: Economic progress can be achieved with the upgrading of the timber road into 26 km of sealed road at Kampung Gana, while allowing government services to reach that area.
One of the recent services accorded to them was the joint mobile registration exercise set up by the National Registration Department (JPN), the High Court and the Office of the Kota Marudu MP to ensure the people had important identification documents.
The mobile exercise was well received by the villagers, many who still do not possess birth certificates and MyKad, who came to the station set up at SK Gana.
The oldest was a 61 year-old woman who told NRD officers that her parents had never registered her birth and when she became older she never applied herself because of distance and having no money.
Now she will soon own the document after taking advantage of the mobile station as it was easier for her to go to from her house.
“In the past, the timber road from Kota Marudu town to Kg Gana could take a four hour journey. This caused a hindrance to villagers to go to the nearest NRD office in town as transportation was difficult and expensive especially during the rainy season when the road was bad and needed a four-wheel vehicle with a skilled driver,” said National Registration Department Special Mobile Unit head Abdon @ Nasir Ambikin.
Abdon said that while difficult journey through rough terrains in the rural areas was part of the job, the mobile unit team was glad that the journey to Kampung Gana was better now with just 40 minutes of driving.
“It has made our job easier too. We had a good turnout at the mobile registration exercise and majority of them, or 83 applicants, were those who had already made late registration of births but they have not gotten endorsement from the High Court. The High Court personnel were on hand to assist them.
“We also received first-time birth certificate applications from 39 out of the 46 people in Kampung Gana identified as not having birth certificates.
“We are happy to have reached out to many villagers. We also find that their level of awareness on the importance of having the documents is much better than before due to better access to town where they need the documents for transactions and also because more development have taken place in the village,” he said.
Kampung Gana is the resettlement village for about 450 families originally from villages scattered within and adjacent to the Lingkabau Forest Reserve who were relocated through the Gana Resettlement and Integrated Development Project in 1997.
Energy, Green technology and Water Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Dr Maximus Ongkili, who is also Kota Marudu MP, said more development was taking place in the village under a modern agropolitan scheme to improve the villagers’ standard of living, economic opportunities and amenities.
The Kota Marudu MP Office had worked with the NRD since 2002 to conduct seven mobile registration exercises thus far, including the current one that ends this Friday.
The team of 20 personnel, who include from the police force, is holding the five-day mobile registration for the Kota Marudu district at five stations – SK Gana in Kampung Gana, SMK Marak Parak, SK Tandek, SK Lampada and Dewan Komuniti Kota Marudu.-Sayangsabah