The Pahang state government is in the process of gazetting 8,571 hectares of reserve land for the Orang Asli, Menteri Besar Wan Rosdy Wan Ismail said.
He said the amount was in addition to 7,156 hectares of land currently gazetted and an additional 8,958 hectares of land already approved by the Pahang State Executive Council.
"This effort is one of the contributions to the welfare of the Orang Asli, especially in Pahang, which has the largest number of Orang Asli in Peninsular Malaysia.
"In Pahang, the number of Orang Asli is 89,375 or 45.1 percent of the total population," Wan Rosdy told reporters after attending a meeting with Orang Asli representatives at Pos Iskandar in Bera, Pahang, yesterday.
He also announced an allocation of RM10,000 to the people of Pos Iskandar, which largely comprises the Semelai tribe.
Wan Rosdy said the welfare of the Orang Asli continues to be a priority of the state government, which wants to ensure that they are not left behind in the development stream, including infrastructure.
He also referred to the construction of seven Orang Asli settlements under the Rancangan Pengumpulan Semula (RPS), with seven of them located in Pahang, including Pos Iskandar.
"The RPS also allows the indigenous people to come together in a more inclusive environment in terms of infrastructure and will enable them to engage in economic activities, such as oil palm or rubber farming," he said.