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Borneo, Sarawak, Sarawakian

Sarawak works to recover and preserve war relics

SARAWAK is working on getting funding to recover and preserve war relics in the State.

Assistant Minister of Culture and Heritage Liwan Lagang said the amount to be set aside would depend on the scope of work.

He pointed out that there is great urgency to do this as those who have information on war history and relics are advanced in age.

Some may ask why such efforts are being considered at all.

World War II was a terrifying and uncertain time for many of our elders.

I remember tales of the lack of daily essentials, having to be resourceful and to go without, the fear for one’s own life and that of loved ones and friends, tales of the cruelty of some Japanese soldiers, as well as the local community’s efforts to help prisoners of war.

Perhaps that period of history and later the communist insurgency, were times that some would have preferred to be forgotten.

We should not, however, allow such dark times in our State’s history to be forgotten because the outcomes shaped who we are today.

While we cannot change history, we can certainly learn from its lessons.

We can certainly hope that the pain of war is never felt in our State again.

Having war relics in our museum and telling their stories can ensure that our present generation has a deeper understanding of the horrors of war and can better appreciate all the blessings of today.

Such relics also have value for those whose histories are intertwined with ours, such as the Australian and British soldiers or their family members.

They also seek to remember those dark times, praise God for the survivors and mourn those who sacrificed their lives.

The Bernama report:

Special Budget To Recover, Preserve War Relics In Sarawak

KUCHING, March 26 (Bernama) — A special budget would be proposed next year to preserve and document war relics and history in Sarawak, state Assistant Minister of Culture and Heritage, Liwan Lagang said today.

He said the amount to be set aside would depend on the scope of work but there was great urgency to do this as those having information on the war history and relics were all in their advanced age.

“As such, we have to do this fast. If these senior citizens are no longer around, we will be losing the information,” he told reporters after opening an exhibition on Bario Commando Heritage at the Art Museum, here.

He said Sarawak had gone through a number of wars in its history and he believed there could be more information and relics of the wars that had yet to be discovered, especially in the interior part of the state.

“Definitely we cannot do this (recover and preserve the relics) without a budget and it (the budget) will also help them (researchers) logistically to move in difficult areas (in interior of Sarawak),” he added.

— BERNAMA

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