Kota Kinabalu: The state government will support an application by the Sabah branch of the Institution of Engineers Malaysia (IEM) for a piece of land to develop.
Deputy Chief Minister, Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan, who is also the Minister of Infrastructure Development said the government acknowledged the role of engineers in nation building.
"Write in formally and I for one will support it" he said in response to the Sabah Chairman of IEM, Lo Chong Chiun when the latter made the request in his speech at the Sabah IEM 36th Annual Dinner on Saturday night.
Earlier in his keynote address, Pairin said the engineering community in Sabah was very close to his heart as many engineers from the various departments under his ministry such as the Public Works Department (PWD), Water Department, and the State Railway Department, are IEM members.
In Lo's speech, he referred to the Sarawak government's offer of six acres of prime land to the Sarawak IEM to be developed as a Regional Centre of Professional Excellence plus a matching grant of RM1 Ringgit to RM1, and hoped likewise from the Sabah government.
"We would like to request our State Government to consider offering a matching grant, not so much so that we can be more relaxed but for us to work harder to expand our training facilities", he said.
According to him, Sabah IEM not only trained professionals but also collaborated with the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) to train sub-professionals and even skilled labourers.
Lo also invited non-member engineers to join the 1,130 engineers in Sabah who are already members of IEM to benefit from the numerous training programmes offered by the institution.
The training is to meet the requirement of 50 Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hours each year in accordance with the mandate of the Board.
He added that IEM also offers members a platform for providing community services and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in the form of an advisory role to the local authorities as well as giving career guidance talks in schools and universities.
The organisation also provides ample networking opportunities which is crucial for career advancement, both locally and overseas.
In his speech, he also thanked the State government for giving Sabah IEM RM500,000 as seed money for its training centre in the Kota Kinabalu Industrial Park (KKIP) which currently is 36 per cent complete, and expected to be operational in 2014.
Also present at the dinner were IEM National President, Vincent Chen and Sabah IEM immediate Past Chairman, Teo Chee Kong.--Courtesy of New Sabah Times