When there is a scarcity in the infrastructure, it means nearly all the rural population are forced to depend on their own subsistence farming for their own food and monetary income. Investment in development and maintenance road infrastructure would contribute towards trade development because road infrastructure opens up unconnected regions to trade and investment. Not only it would improve access to goods, services and employment opportunities, but also leads to sustainable growth and development of the economy which arises due to the multiplier effects of government spending on infrastructure in the economy.
Pitas is one of the poorest districts in Sabah, Malaysia. Most of the villagers live deep inside the tropical rainforests in which are not easily accessible by cars or by boats. Most of the villagers live in deplorable conditions, trying to survive their lives with limited resources available.
A group of concerned Sabahans is currently trying to raise at least RM85,000.00 (USD27,000.00) to fund this non-profit project to build a 7.5km (4.7 miles) road for 6 villages in Pitas, i.e. Kg. Mandamai, Kg. Kobon, Kg. Perupok, Kg. Dowokon, Kg. Maliau Pusat and Kg. Maliau Layung. The project is fully dependent on public donations as the Government proposal to build the road was approved 5 years ago, alas, it has not been built until now. It’s really sad to know the fact that more than 3,000 villagers (especially school children, and pregnant women) have to go through thick forest on foot to the nearest river before they can take a small boat, and walk for another mile in order to reach the nearest road. The group is also looking for a few photographers to voluntarily join this community project to increase public awareness.
For more information on this project or donations, please visit their official site at Help Pitas Villagers to Build Road or reach out to Philip Golingai via his Twitter (@PhilipGolingai).