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Fighting Poverty: Ewon wants UPKO to establish 1 cooperative, 1 association in each division


13 November 2023

By Wartawan Nabalu News


KOTA MARUDU: The President of the United Progressive Kinabalu Organisation (UPKO) wants all divisions of the party to be part of the poverty eradication solutions in their respective areas by establishing at least one cooperative and association.


Ewon, who is also the Minister of Entrepreneurship and Cooperative Development, said that the establishment of cooperatives and associations can become platforms for the development of entrepreneurship and skills among the people in their respective areas.


"UPKO Zone A, which includes Kudat, Kota Marudu, and Kota Belud, feels sad because these areas have been labeled as the poorest districts in Sabah and Malaysia. Therefore, UPKO needs to be part of the solution to change this status through the cooperative and association movement in each division.


"UPKO must be effective not only in voicing the people's problems but also in being part of the solution. Through the cooperative movement, we can generate entrepreneurial activities for the people. Through the association movement, we can generate educational and skills activities for the people," he said.


Ewon made these remarks while speaking at the UPKO Zone A Convention at the Tandek Open Hall, here, today.


Also present were the Honorary President of UPKO, who is also the Member of Parliament for Tuaran, Datuk Madius Tangau, UPKO Chief Kudat Division, Junsim Rumunzing, UPKO Chief Kota Marudu Division, Jamil Majingkin, and the Chairman of the Organising Committee, Carlye Lajimin.


Ewon said that the Ministry of Entrepreneurship and Cooperative Development of Malaysia , through the Malaysian Cooperative Commission (SKM), has proposed price stabilisation measures through the cooperative movement to ensure that the prices of essential goods sold in urban cooperatives are the same as those sold in rural cooperatives through transportation subsidies to distributing cooperatives.


"I have raised this matter in the cabinet, and the Prime Minister (Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim) has asked me to submit the details. Therefore, my Ministry has held several discussions, and I will bring the details to the Prime Minister and the upcoming cabinet.


"In addition, through cooperatives, we can also help market various products and services of its members. This includes encouraging cooperatives to engage in the food security sector, such as paddy cultivation and other crops or livestock farming that contribute to the nation's food security.


"We have an asset, which is land. Our country still relies on imported rice supplies. If the rice-producing countries were to stop exporting to our country, we could face a rice supply crisis. Therefore, cooperatives should be established to venture into the field of food security, including rice cultivation, to ensure the rice supply in the country," he said.


Ewon also stated that the MADANI 2024 Budget has allocated RM1 billion for the MADANI community programme and RM6.8 billion for the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) skills programme.


"I want to see the party's divisions establish at least one association in order to generate economic, skills, and educational activities for the people in their respective divisions. My task is to facilitate so that each division can bring the available facilities in the budget to the community, including youth entrepreneurship development.


"As the President of UPKO, I focus on two main areas, which are entrepreneurship development and leadership. We have appointed party leaders with strong backgrounds to various government agencies to develop Sabah's entrepreneurs and subsequently establish Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) with government agencies to ensure that educational financing is provided to students in need," he said.

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