Sabah deputy chief minister Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan handing over a souvenir to Rural and Rigional Development minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob suring a dinner in conjuction with the coordianation meeting among the later and the rural minister and exco members (MEXCLUB). Pix by Mohd Adam Arinin

KOTA KINABALU: The Sabah government is targetting to eradicate poverty rate in the state by 2035, said Chief Minister Tan Sri Musa Aman.

Musa said the target has been included in the roadmap of the state's long term development strategic plan known as Sabah LEAP 2016-2035.

"Among the main issues highlighted in the plan include reducing the poverty rate to zero by 2035 and ensuring the people have full access to clean water and electricity supply.

"The poverty rate in Sabah has shown a significant drop from 19.7 per cent in 2009 to 2.9 per cent in 2016," he said, adding before the end of the 11th Malaysia Plan, which is due in 2020, the poverty rate can be reduced to one per cent.

Musa's speech was read by his deputy Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan during a dinner in conjunction with the coordination meeting among Rural and Regional Development minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob and the Rural ministers and exco members (MEXCLUB) here.

He added it will only be possible for the state to progress and develop if there was a good relationship between the state and federal government.

"There have been many transformation programmes, the brainchild of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, which have resulted in more people coming out from the poverty.

"For the state government, we welcome the implementation of the MEXCLUB meeting in the state as we believe the meeting will be able to look into issues and recommendations to address development in rural areas in the country especially in the state."

Musa added, Sabah thanked the federal government for the huge allocation to fund electricity and water supply projects to rural areas under the Rural Electricity programme and Rural water supply programme.

He said the state government and the ministry have been implementing other poverty eradication projects under the Mini Estet Sejahtera (MESEJ) programme to improve the quality of life and well being of the people in rural areas.

To date, there are 52 MESEJ projects that have being implemented throughout the state. When they are completed, more than 2,500 households will benefit.

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