The setting of policy direction for management of all National Parks and other Protected Areas in Sarawak is the responsibility of the State Government through the National Parks and Nature Reserves Ordinance (1998) and associated Regulations.
The Ordinance includes a provision for the Government, through the Controller of Parks, to appoint a ‘Managing Agent’ to undertake the day to day planning and management functions (in line with Government policy and any Management Plan) for a National Park or Nature Reserve or any part or function thereof.
The Protected Areas and Biodiversity Conservation (PABC) Unit of the Sarawak Forestry Corporation is responsible for the management of all totally Protected Areas of Sarawak except for Gunung Mulu National Park which has been divided into two distinct zones, one being the ‘wilderness zone’, which is more than 90% of the Park area, and the other being a defined ‘tourism zone’.
The PABC Unit is responsible for the management of the Wilderness Zone and Borsarmulu Park Management Sdn Bhd has been appointed as the Managing Agent for the Tourism Zone with the responsibility to implement the recommendations of the Integrated Development and Management Plan for the Park which affect the Tourism Zone.
The Park has not been ‘privatized’ as such, but the management of the Tourism Zone simply outsourced to a private company which is required to implement a program of development, operational and maintenance activities under the direction of a Government committee specifically established for the purpose.
MEET THE PEOPLE OF MULU
Lun Bawang, Murut and Iban to the north, Kelabit in the south east, Berawan and Penan to the south and some nomadic Penan within the boundaries of the park; all have lived in this rainforest for millennia.These Orang Ulu or ‘up river’ people are a diverse group of many cultures share a remarkable understanding of the rainforest which they have used for generations for their food, medicines, tool making and building shelters.
Rivers are not only the lifeblood of the rainforest and the caves but also for the people of Mulu. Longhouse life centres around the Melinau and Tutoh Rivers for transport, washing, food, play and for simply watching the world go by. Travelling along the Melinau to Wind and Clearwater Caves gives visitors great insight into the everyday activities of these communities.
You can stop by at the Batu Bungan handicraft market on your way up-river to visit the Cave of the Winds and Clearwater Cave or you arrange a boat to take you downstream to the larger Tutoh River and visit the Penan community of Long Iman to learn about how medicinal plants are used even today. They too have a handicraft market or you can arrange for one of the local people to take you on a forest walk to the beautiful Long Iman waterfall.