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Semaq Beri Orang Asli move out again, not returning home

Last Update: 19/06/2019

HULU TERENGGANU, June 19  (Bernama) --  The temporary settlement around Kampung Gerdong here, which was the focus of the Semaq Beri tribe of the Orang Asli community, is now vacant and abandoned.

A check by Bernama found more than 150 Orang Asli from the tribe had reportedly left their homes and moved to another forest.

An Orang Asli source, preferring to remain anonymous, told Bernama that the area was vacant since yesterday evening, and most of the Semaq Beri tribe chose not to return to the settlement in Sungai Berua, but rather moved to a deeper forest compared to before.

He said the Orang Asli community from Semaq Beri tribe or known as the people of the jungle, would normally stay for about two weeks at each location and would move to another forest to avoid untoward incidents.

Last Saturday, Bernama visited the settlement and found there were 26 families including 56 children who had left their homes, bringing their entire family members and food items, and also their pets especially cats and chickens.

Prior to this,  Semaq Beri tribe headman Ibrahim Awang, 75 said their decision to enter the forest was to avoid the infectious diseases from the Batek tribe of the Orang Asli community in Kampung Kuala Koh, Gua Musang, who visited Sungai Berua early this month.

Despite admitting that the action had caused many (Semaq Beri) children not attending school, the news of a series of deaths that happened in Kuala Koh resulted in their determination to move out from Sungai Berua.

Besides more than 150 Semaq Beri tribe at Kampung Gerdong, there are many who have moved out to other forests. However, the number and its location could not be ascertained.




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