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PETRONAS, YAYASAN SABAH reach out to Imbak Canyon Community

PETRONAS and Yayasan Sabah reached out to the communities around Imbak Canyon Conservation Area (ICCA) in Tongod in the heart of Sabah, in a briefing session, aimed at creating awareness on the effort to conserve the state’s pristine heritage.

Some 140 residents from 10 villages in Mukim Pinangah attended the session on 5 February. The villages were Kampung Alitang, Kampung Saguon, Kampung Diwara, Kampung Mankawagu, Kampung Pinangah, Kampung Melikop, Kampung Masaum, Kampung Langga, Kampung Tudungin and Kampung Kampung Inarad, located west of ICCA.

In her speech at the event, General Manager of PETRONAS Sabah and Labuan Regional Office Julita Ontol spoke of the
collaboration to conserve Imbak Canyon under the Yayasan Sabah- PETRONAS Imbak Canyon Conservation Partnership.

“Despite all these efforts, the support of the communities around the ICCA is equally important in the conservation of Imbak Canyon,” she said.

Among the activities during the one-day event was a presentation each by the ICCA, Sabah Wildlife Department, Sabah Forestry Department and Universiti Malaysia Sabah as well as a dialogue with the local community.

ICCA Acting Manager Robinson Rozali Rustin, in his presentation, said the local communities would benefit from Imbak Canyon’s conservation efforts.

“To cater to the anticipated increase in the number of tourists in the future, there will be demand for jobs such as research assistants, and services such as guides and porters, as well as transportation, which will benefit the surrounding community,” he said.

Also present were Tongod District Officer Robert Stidi and Yayasan Sabah’s Senior Manager of Conservation & Environmental Management Division Rita Stuel Galid.

The programme also aimed at collecting information on the customs, culture and language as well as the socio-economic activities of Mukim Pinangah which would later be used to update the information at the PETRONAS-funded Ulu Kinabatangan Information Centre in Kampung Imbak.

The centre was opened last year along with the Ulu Kinabatangan Jetty, also funded by the national oil company.

In 2012, a similar reach out programme was held in Mukim Karamuak, one of four clusters of villages around the ICCA. The three others are Mukim Tongod, Mukim Kuamut and Mukim Pinangah.

Issued by
PETRONAS Sabah and Labuan Regional Office 16 February 2014

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