GUA MUSANG (BERNAMA) – The Orang Asli Development Department (JAKOA) yesterday appointed several contractors to ferry 1,081 Orang Asli primary and secondary school students living in rural areas to their schools.
Kelantan/Terengganu JAKOA Director Hashim Alang Abdul Hamid said the students were ferried using 30 four-wheel-drive vehicles through logging roads.
“Although the roads are still damaged and a little difficult to connect to the town area, it is still possible to go through, but they (drivers) need to be careful to keep the students safe and get them to school safely,” he told reporters yesterday.
He said out of the total, 511 students are attending secondary schools.
“Another 570 students go to primary schools, and they began transporting the students at 6am today, with all of them placed in dormitories at their respective schools,” he said.
Hashim Alang said the students are mostly living in rural areas which are located far away from their schools.
He also acknowledged that several years ago, the students had to be transported by air by the Malaysian Rescue Fire Department due to land accessibility issues.
Meanwhile, Alang Anjang, 55, an Orang Asli from Pos Balar, said transporting their children to school was not a big problem this year.
“Our children are being transported by four-wheel-drive vehicles, and some parents send their own children, especially those who have a shorter trip to school,” he said.