Dalat, Sarawak

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Dalat
Chinese transcription(s)
 • Simplified拉叻
Aerial view of Dalat town. The river seen here is the Oya river.
Aerial view of Dalat town. The river seen here is the Oya river.
Official logo of Dalat
Districts of Sarawak
Motto(s): 
Berakar Rumbia, Berinti Budaya[1]
Dalat is located in East Malaysia
Dalat
Dalat
Location of Dalat in Malaysian Borneo
Coordinates: 2°44′20″N 111°56′19″E / 2.73889°N 111.93861°E / 2.73889; 111.93861
District Office locationDalat
Local area governmentMajlis Daerah Dalat dan Mukah (MDDM)
Population
 (2010[2])
 • Total619
District OfficerKueh Lei Poh
Postcode96300
Websitehttp://www.mukah-dalatdc.sarawak.gov.my/

Dalat is the administrative town of the Dalat district in Mukah Division, Sarawak, Malaysia. It is situated by the Oya river.

Etymology

According to Heidi Munan's book "How Dalat Got Its Name", Dalat was named following a bloodshed among three brothers as the village chief did not name a successor. Many people died in the war. Corpses lying in the village attracted flies. "Dalat" means fly in the Melanau language, and therefore, the locals named the village Dalat, which is now a small town.[3]

History

Government

Dalat is represented at the State Legislative Assembly by Dato' Sri Hajah Fatimah Abdullah @ Ting Sai Ming, from Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu. She won the seat in the 18th State Election 2016 for the fourth time. For Parliament, Dalat district is under Parliament 213: Mukah.

Geography and climate

Similar to most areas in the Rajang Delta, Dalat town and its land district is located on peat land that is categorized as deep peat (more than 150 cm).[4]

Demographics

According to the 2010 National Census, Dalat townland has a population of 619.[5]

Population of Dalat by ethnic group[6]
ethnic group percent
Melanau
50.89%
Chinese
29.72%
Malay
7.75%
Iban
4.68%
Other Bumiputera and others
6.96%

Most of the people use Melanau language to communicate here. There is a slight difference of the language between each villages, yet they can understand each other very well. Other languages such as Malay, Sarawak Malay, Iban, Mandarin, Hokkien and English are also widely spoken.

Main religions practised in Dalat are Islam, Christianity (Roman Catholic, Methodist and SIB), Buddhism, and Malaysian Chinese religion.

Economy

Dalat is reputed to be the largest sago flour producer in the world. The district has four modern sago factories with a total output of more than 74 tonnes per day.[7]

The importance of the sago palm tree is evident in the district tagline.[1]

Transport

Road

Dalat is connected by a single-carriage road to Mukah. There are daily express bus services connecting Dalat and Miri via Bintulu and Mukah.[8]

Air

The nearest airport is Mukah Airport.[9] The locals however prefer to use either Bintulu Airport or Sibu Airport to fly to Kuala Lumpur particularly.

Water

River transportation is still very vital in Dalat. There are speed boats connecting Dalat and Sibu with a fee of MYR 25. The journey takes approximately 2 hours.[8]

Other utilities

Education

Dalat town has four secondary schools namely SMK Dalat, SMK Oya, SMK Batang Igan and SMK Agama Igan. In the town proper, there are three primary schools namely SJK (C) Chin Hua, SK Saint Bernard and SK Kampung Sungai Ud .[10]

In January 2018, Centre Of Technical Excellence Sarawak (CENTEXS) Temporary Campus was officially launched by Dato Sri Fatimah Abdullah offering Textile & Hospitality courses for the first intake. She also announced the plan to build a new CENTEXS campus costing RM 50 million will be built near Dalat Welfare Complex. [11]

Healthcare

Hospital Dalat Phase 1

The town is served by an eight-bedded public hospital, Dalat Hospital. [12] Despite having the least number of beds among 22 public hospitals in Sarawak, it is equipped with facilities such as X-ray laboratory and a dialysis centre.

Since there is a good system of transportation, any needs which Dalat Hospital could not handle would be referred to Mukah Hospital or even Sibu Hospital. [12]

Others

Dalat town also has a post office, district office, a hospital, a stadium (Stadium Perpaduan Dalat), a few blocks of shop-houses, a Catholic church (St. Bernard Church), a Methodist Church, a Chinese temple (age more than a century) and a district mosque. A Senior Citizens’ Activity Centre (PAWE) was established by the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development in Dalat with 439 registered members.[13] In June 2017, a voluntary fire station was launched. The fire station is an interim measure to respond swiftly to fires as the nearest facility is in Mukah, some 40 minutes’ drive away.[14]

There is only one bank in Dalat which is a branch of RHB Bank.

Culture and leisure

The waterfront by the Oya river as seen in December 2010

The people here particularly the Melanaus are still practising their culture. The Melanaus are famous for their traditional food such as umai, sago worms and the sago pearls. Also, there is a carnival named Karnival Balau (Balau is the Sago palm in Melanau language) which is held annually, and also a regatta, held few years once. Some major celebrations here are Christmas, Hari Raya Aidilfitri, Chinese New Year and the Kaul Festival. The Kaul Festival is celebrated on different dates for different villages.

Associations/ Clubs

  • The Dalat Melanau Association was registered on 9 September 2010 under Association Act 1966-33 with Registrar Of Societies Number PPM-002-13-09092010.[15] The association aims to encourage Melanau at Dalat district to be more proactive and while helping to promote progress for local Melanau people. The club also aims to protect Melanau Dalat heritage and culture.
  • Dalat Photography Club - Co-founded by well known freelance photographer Naising Bega who is famous for his artwork. Naising also acts as one of the instructors in this club.[16] The club was registered on 6 November 2012 with ROS PPM014-13-06112012.[17] The club initially known as Melanau Dalat Photography Club which made it early present on Pesta Bersaug Dalat on October 2010. It later renamed to Dalat Photography Club to encourage more people enter the club.[18] The Patron of the club is Dalat state assembly woman Datuk Hajah Fatimah Abdullah @ Ting Sai Ming[19].

Literature

  • Heidi Munan's short story 'How Dalat Got Its Name' is published in the book Melanau stories(2005) Utusan Publications.[20] The short story was included in the Malaysian lower secondary school English literature curriculum from 2000 to 2009.[21][22]
  • The Kut Canal and Medong Village are also featured in the book Melanau stories(2005), in 'The Story of Kut Canal'.[20]

Notable people

  • Dato' Sri Hajah Fatimah Abdullah @ Ting Sai Ming - State Assembly Representative of Dalat and the current Minister of Welfare, Community Well Being, Women, Family and Childhood Development (Sarawak). She was born and raised in Kampung Teh, Dalat.[23]
  • Rozie Khan - fashion designer and founder of "Rozie Khan Couture". She is the winner of the Best Designer award during the 2018 Borneo Fashion Week. [24]

References

  1. ^ a b "Dalat waiting to be explored by culture, history buffs". The Borneo Post. Retrieved 2 August 2013.
  2. ^ "Laporan Kiraan Permulaan 2010". Jabatan Perangkaan Malaysia. p. 27. Archived from the original on 8 July 2011. Retrieved 24 January 2011.
  3. ^ Chris Lau. "Dalat - a town of the Sarawak river people". Malaysia Kini. Retrieved 12 December 2018.
  4. ^ "A QUICK SCAN OF PEATLANDS IN MALAYSIA". Wetlands International – Malaysia. Retrieved 4 December 2019.
  5. ^ "Laporan Kiraan Permulaan 2010". Jabatan Perangkaan Malaysia. p. 35. Archived from the original on 8 July 2011. Retrieved 24 January 2011.
  6. ^ "Visi, Misi dan Latar Belakang" (in Malay). Pejabat Daerah Dalat. Retrieved 2 August 2013.[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ "MUKAH (P213) A smart city in the making". New Sarawak Tribune. Retrieved 21 February 2019.
  8. ^ a b Chang Yi (28 May 2017). "Life by the banks of Oya River". The Borneo Post. Retrieved 21 February 2019.
  9. ^ "A very quiet day in Dalat, SARAWAK". BumiSepi.com. Retrieved 21 February 2019.
  10. ^ "Daerah Dalat". Federation of Malaysian Consumers Associations. Archived from the original on 8 August 2016. Retrieved 7 June 2016.
  11. ^ "CENTEXS hanya terima pelajar bebas dadah" (in Malay). Utusan Borneo. 29 January 2018. Retrieved 15 October 2018.
  12. ^ a b "Eight is enough beds for Dalat Hospital". The Borneo Post. 6 September 2013. Retrieved 16 November 2018.
  13. ^ "Fatimah: Senior Citizens deserve to live happy and prosperous lives". New Sarawak Tribune. Archived from the original on 12 September 2014. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  14. ^ "Voluntary fire station in Dalat ready for operation". The Borneo Post. Retrieved 21 June 2017.
  15. ^ "Persatuan Melanau Dalat Sarawak". Retrieved 17 October 2015.
  16. ^ "NainetPhotomania Blog". NainetPhotomania Blog. Archived from the original on 15 September 2014. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
  17. ^ "Dalat Photography Club ( Kelab Fotografi Dalat )". mysociety.my. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
  18. ^ "Dalat Photography Club - DPC". www.facebook.com. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
  19. ^ "Dalat Photography Club turns 3 | New Sarawak Tribune". www.newsarawaktribune.com. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
  20. ^ a b "Melanau stories / Heidi Munan". Librarynet.com.my. Retrieved 12 December 2018.[permanent dead link]
  21. ^ Gilbert, Perrieire; Jana, Maya; Renee, Allen; Wong, Chee Fui; Wong, Ming Yook (2007). PMR English - Complete Text and Guide - Integrated Curriculum for secondary schools. Shah Alam, Malaysia: Arah Pendidikan Sdn Bhd. p. 250. ISBN 9789833717088. Retrieved 30 August 2015.
  22. ^ Chew, Fong Peng; Tan, Li Chin (30 June 2011). "International Conference - International Education:Focus on the Learner - Malaysia Ministry of Education's Selection of Poems for the Form Four and Form Five New Literature Component" (PDF): 3. Archived from the original (PDF) on 30 August 2015. Retrieved 30 August 2015. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  23. ^ "Fatimah the right candidate for Dalat: Taib". Utusan Malaysia. Archived from the original on 5 March 2016. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
  24. ^ PRISCILLA TAWIE (23 March 2019). "Rozie Khan: An eye for fashion". New Sarawak Tribune. Retrieved 13 May 2019.
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