Orang Asli to sit on board of govt’s tourism agencies

Dr Mahathir Mohamad called for efforts to promote handicraft products by Orang Asli at the National Orang Asli Convention 2019 in Putrajaya today.

PUTRAJAYA: The tourism, arts and culture ministry will appoint Orang Asli as board members for Tourism Malaysia and Kraftangan Malaysia to help promote eco-tourism products in Orang Asli settlements.

“They (the appointments) will be made immediately,” its minister Mohamaddin Ketapi said in a statement, adding that further discussions will be held with the agencies involved to identify positions that can be filled by the Orang Asli.

The move is in response to the call by Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad at the National Orang Asli Convention 2019 in Putrajaya today to promote handicraft products by Orang Asli.

Mohamaddin said representatives of the Orang Asli must be part of his ministry to share their ideas and market their crafts in a more holistic manner.

He said that at present, the ministry’s focus was on eco-tourism and craft products because they were tourist attractions.

He said most of Orang Asli settlements had eco-tourism features and their homestay accommodation should be promoted.

“The Orang Asli community is very skilled with the environment and their settlements which are in hilly areas are the best eco-tourism products,” he said.