A group of 86 Bachelor in Pharmaceutical Technology students from UniKL Royal College of Medicine visited three indigenous villages at Tapah, Perak to better understand the culture of Orang Asli Temiar as well as to study their lifestyle. The group visited three villages comprising Kampung Batu 5, Kampung Sg Chedun and Kampung Sungai Odak.
“This is the first time most of the students have met and talked to the indigenous people. The three Tok Batin from the three different villages were very friendly. I’m impressed to see the villages were mostly clean and well-taken care. The villages were equipped with a clinic, library, surau and a multipurpose hall” said the Project Manager Nur Izzat Nazmi bin Ismail. “I love the fresh air and the simple life here” she said.
“I was nervous before coming to this Orang Asli settlement. I was brought up in the city and I have not had the opportunity to visit Orang Asli settlements before. I was very surprised when I saw their houses were like normal houses. Previously, I was under the impression that they still stayed in a very remote place and hardly meet people and still go hunting for food. In fact, I was told by one of the kampung folk that there are two KKM staff nurses working here” said Pavitra Ramanaidu.
This study tour was sponsored by the State Government and UniKL RCMP.
Program secretary Mathilda Gubod a Sabahan said, “There are slight differences between the indigenous people of Sabah and those in Tapah, Perak. In Sabah, the indigenous people are more sociable, they are more health conscious and open-minded. I hope the indigenous people in Tapah will give serious attention to education in order to improve their economic status”.
The General Studies lecturer, Ibrahim Ahmad said, “The trip to the three indigenous villages at Tapah was a meaningful experience for the students. The students were able to communicate and observe the lifestyle and culture of the Semai' tribe. We were grateful to the JAKOA who arranged the meeting with the Tok Batin in the three villages who are able to provide the necessary information for the students. On top of that, the students were thrilled to get the opportunity to ride on the army truck.”
Mr Hisshamuddin Omar, CEO and Head of Campus UniKL RCMP who sent off the students earlier expressed his hope that such visits would inspire more students to engage in more of such activities in the future. The trip also had the pleasure of the attendance of Mr Ahmad Zakuan bin Khairuddin, Dr Kamarul Afendey bin Hamimi, Ustaz Ahmad Zullaili bin Zamri and Puan Zahaimi Abdullah Sani.