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Saturday, October 8, 2016
Tourism project to promote new villages
ALOR SETAR: A pilot project to showcase the uniqueness of 20 new villages as tourist destinations next year is in the pipeline, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong.
“The new village division in the Prime Minister’s Department is now shortlisting the 20 new villages out of 613 nationwide for the project.
“We already have a rough list, which will be finalised by next year,” he told a press conference after a new village management meeting here yesterday.
Dr Wee cited a village called Machap Walk in Malacca.
“The village is very popular on social media, especially on Facebook, and I’ve met foreign tourists as well as old university friends there by coincidence.
“Every weekend, many people visit the place.
“This is good for the villagers, as they get the chance to make some extra income,” he said.
Dr Wee, who is also MCA deputy president, added that he had discussed the matter with Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Nazri Aziz, who was keen on the idea.
“There are new villages famous for their durians as well as other foods, among other attractions. Homestays can also be organised in these villages.”
He said 613 new villages were set up in the 1950s during the Emergency.
“New village development programmes, which included road repairs and the upgrading of drainage systems, were carried out.
“Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak approved RM60.7mil to implement 792 of these improvement projects nationwide.
“We have asked the 613 village development and security committees to identify the programmes that can be carried out next year,” he said, adding that one of the successful programmes this year was the repairing and upgrading of 1,025 new village houses at a cost of RM8.8mil.
In Sungai Petani, Dr Wee, who was officiating the Kedah MCA liaison committee annual convention, urged members to work hard and win back the seats lost in the last general election.
For seats held by MCA – Kulim and Gurun – he called on them to strive for a bigger majority.