KUCHING — Sarawak became the first state in the country to have a state-owned television station following the official launching of TV Sarawak (TVS) here last night. The television station was launched by Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud during a ceremony held at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg in his speech at the ceremony said the objective of TVS is to be a platform for Sarawak content creators.

“Producers and performers can showcase their work on TVS. It is also an effective medium for communication through news bulletins, current affairs programmes and talk shows of all kinds for the state. With the existence of TVS, I hope it will open more doors for Sarawak to make a mark in every part of the world,” he said.

Taib and Raghad, joined by Abang Johari (left) and Juma’ani (right) pose upon arriving for the launching of TV Sarawak.

He also said that TVS will not only be a platform for the community to get official local, national and global news, but also a platform that encourages national integration between the various races and cultures.

“It is a great gift for the people of Sarawak but more importantly, it is a platform to promote the works of players in our local creative scene and give them the opportunity to monetise their talents.”

Abang Johari further noted that the setting-up of Sarawak’s own television station was among the first few promises that he made when he took over as chief minister from the late Pehin Sri Adenan Satem. He said he was happy at being able to fulfil one more of his promises made to Sarawakians within a space of three years or so.

After undergoing rebranding, TVS started broadcasting last Saturday in conjunction with Taib’s 84th birthday, and now offers a new, fresh and inspiring concept that is targeted to inspire the hears of the world. It is currently running a trial run on Astro Channel 122.

Earlier, the Head of State performed a gimmick with other officials on stage to launch the television station, followed by an introduction of TVS’ personalities to the audience. Among those present at the ceremony were Taib’s wife Toh Puan Datuk Patinggi Raghad Kurdi Taib, Abang Johari’s wife Datin Patinggi Datuk Amar Juma’ani Tuanku Bujang, state cabinet ministers and other distinguished guests.