Malaysian and Swedish cooperation to help indigenous people

Dato Hj. Mohd. Sani Bin Mistam, Director General, Jabatan Kemajuan Orang Asli (JKOA) – the Hill Tribes Department, responsible for the indigenous population in Malaysia – will meet with the regional representative for the International Institute of the IOGT-NTO Movemnet, Mr Naret Songkrawsook in Kuala Lumpur to discuss a joint project concerning alcohol harm among the Orang Asli tribal population.

There are some 180 000 Orang Asli in Peninsula Malaysia, several researches in Sabah confirm the pervasive nature of adolescence using alcohol. This serves as an indicator that alcohol use in this state is more serious than previously perceived. Alcohol harm not only affects the socio-economy and health condition of the individual, but creates a host of related social problems for the immediate family, the community and the society at large.

Therefore the department wants to  study and adopt current best practices to help solve or ameliorate its concerns in this area.

IOGT will give access to the knowledge from our CBDAC (Community Based Drug Abuse Control) in our work among Hill Tribes in Thailand and Lao PDR, which have been successfully implemented for a long time.

For more reading and evidence:

WHO 2011 country profile Malaysia: Status on Alcohol and Health (p. 240) and the WHO Global Status Report on Alcohol and Health, from 2011

UN Report “The State of the World’s Indigenous People” (2009)

“Between Myth and Reality: Why are Orang Asli more prone to ill health?” a report from 1999