JOHOR BAHRU, 6 June – The Tora Malayensis team from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) was declared the champion for the Raja Zarith Sofiah Wildlife Defenders Challenge 2013.
The prize was presented by Her Royal Highness (HRH) Raja Zarith Sofiah Almarhum Sultan Idris Shah at Galeria Kota Raya.
The UTM team leader, Mohamad Khamis Baharuddin said that the team members gained not only in terms of knowledge, but also in terms of soft skills. This is due to the nature of the competition involving various stages and activities which took place within a duration of 10 months, from September 2013 to June 2014.
“In this competition, we were required to compete in three main challenges. The first challenge was to create awareness about wildlife preservation among group members. The second challenge was to raise awareness of wildlife preservation among the campus community followed by the third level which to enhance awareness on environment and wildlife conservation to the community at large, “he said.
Participants were evaluated rigorously at every stage to determine that only the most eligible group would advance to the next stage.
“Only five groups made it through to Stage 2. And only 3 groups including UTM were successfully selected to the finals,” he said.
According to Mohamad Kamis, participants were also required to make a trip to the forest reserve of Endau Rompin, Pahang and also to propose a t-shirt design.
A total of 160 participants, comprising 10 groups from Institutions of Higher Learning (IPTA), as well as 10 groups from secondary schools and 10 groups from primary schools around the state of Johor, took part in the competition.
Tora Malayensis team brought home RM5, 000.00 cash money, a trophy and tickets to London, United Kingdom.
The second and third place was won by Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia (UTHM).

Mohamad Kamis (most right) receiving trophies from HRH Raja Zarith Sofiah at Galeria Kota Raya, Johor Bahru.

Mohamad Kamis (extreme right) receiving the winning trophy from HRH Raja Zarith Sofiah at Galeria Kota Raya, Johor Bahru.