“The habit of recording or documenting has to be cultivated in the young, lest we forget our history over time,” said Perak Menteri Besar Dato’ Seri DiRaja Dr Zambry bin Abd Kadir, at the launch of a set of five coffee table books by the Perak Town and Country Planning Department at Casuarina@Meru recently.
Zambry observed that unlike Westerners, Malaysians are far behind in the documentation of important events in their lives. Therefore, the set of five coffee table books on small towns in Perak, from the perspective of town planning, is a breakthrough for the Department. The history of Perak will now be remembered and passed on to future generations.
The idea for the bilingual 80 to 100-page books was mooted during a working trip overseas where the Menteri Besar realised that there are a lot of treasures in Perak, left undiscovered or forgotten.
Tasked with the book project, Director of Perak Town and Country Planning Department, Dato’ Dr Dolbani bin Mijan proposed to begin with five towns, namely, Karai, Bagan Serai, Beruas, Papan and Gopeng, with the approval of the Menteri Besar.
The Department has plans to publish more books on other small towns in the state, similar to this first batch, which will be used as gifts and souvenirs for visiting dignitaries.
Besides launching the books, the function was also to celebrate the department’s recent achievements; obtaining 4 stars in the Accountability Index by the National Audit Department and 5 stars in the Malaysia Government Portals and Websites Assessment 2013.
In attendance were Dato’ Saarani Mohamad, Executive Councillor for Local Government, State Secretary Dato’ Abdul Puhat Mat Nayan, State Financial Officer Dato’ Haji Mohd Ghazali Jalal, the Director-General of the Federal Department of Town and Country Planning Peninsular Malaysia and invited guests.