KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 18 — The government is conducting a review of the Aboriginal Peoples Act 1954 (Act 134) which among others involved registering marriage and land ownership of the Orang Asli community.
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said as a start, a legal framework development study and mechanism for the administration of Orang Asli marriage and divorce customs in Peninsula Malaysia has commenced on Sept 15.
“The issue of Orang Asli land which will also be considered in the review of Act 134, need to be studied comprehensively as it involved dfferences as well as overlaping authorities involving the federal and state governments,” he said when winding up the debate on the Mid-Term Review of the 12 Malaysia Plan (12MP MTR) at Dewan Rakyat today.
Apart from that, Ahmad Zahid who is also Rural and Regional Development Minister said the strategy to bring progress to Orang Asli community has been outlined in the Department of Orang Asli Development (JAKOA) strategic plan to give focus on the socio-economic development of the Orang Asli community.
He said the plan is being drafted in the effort to raise the quality of life via providing comprehensive infrastructure in all Orang Asli villages.
On Orang Asli students, Ahmad Zahid said 350 Orang Asli students have been accepted into universities last year, which exceeded the original ministry target of 300 people.
“For the following year (2023), we are targeting 400 students and we are monitoring this time, as we are confident of getting almost 500 Orang Asli students into universities.
“This is a social assimilation method which is carrying out through the restructuring of the Orang Asli community and we will not compromise on ther quality of education for Orang Asli in the best possible ways,” he added.