SIBU: Thanks to the state government, the Sibu Sikh Temple (Gurdwara Sahib Sibu) will have its hostel for worshippers soon.
The hostel in Jalan Awang Ramli Amit is expected to be completed by June or July this year.
Housing and Public Health Assistant Minister Dr Annuar Rapaee, who visited the temple on May 25 to check on the progress of the construction of the hostel, said the RM200,000 project received the green light under the Rural Transformation Programme (RTP).
“The government approved the hostel project under the RTP fund for Nangka.
“I am also distributing funds to other places of worship like mosques and churches,“ said Annuar.
“The government wants to ensure that all worshippers in the state, irrespective of their beliefs, have a place to practise their faiths,“ he said.
Sibu Sikh Temple Association president Jagjiwan Singh said the temple was built in 1920 and renovated 40 years later in 1960.
“At that time we planned for a hostel for devotees to be used during Akhand Path prayers at the temple (and the idea was) supported by devotees from Miri, Kuching and Sabah.”
“In 2011, we decided to use a piece of land at the back of the gurdwara for the hostel project as it has been left vacant for years.
“Thanks to Dr Annuar, who has been consistent in his support for the temple, renovations were able to be carried out since 2015,“ he said.
He said the temple has its own plan to build at least five apartment-style single-storey units.
Each unit will have two bedrooms, a living hall, a kitchen and a bathroom, he added.
“The Public Works Department (JKR) informed the temple committee that with the RTP budget, they would be able to build two units,“ Jagjiwan said.
Approval was given in December last year with JKR appointed as the contractor. Construction works, which began in February, are due for completion in June or July.
Jagjiwan said the temple committee planned to have the official opening in August or September.