Team hopes to find more skele­tons in Guar Kepah

New Straits Times - - Entertainment -

GE­ORGE TOWN: Ar­chae­ol­o­gists car­ry­ing out ex­ca­va­tion work at Guar Kepah in Kepala Batas hope to find more hu­man skele­tons, sim­i­lar to the 5,710-year-old skele­ton of a woman, dis­cov­ered last month.

Univer­siti Sains Malaysia (USM) Global Ar­chae­o­log­i­cal Re­search Cen­tre di­rec­tor Pro­fes­sor Datuk Dr Mokhtar Saidin said they were hope­ful of find­ing more hu­man skele­tons after dis­cov­er­ing a third and the largest shell mid­den at the site.

“This is the only site dis­cov­ered in Malaysia where bod­ies were buried in a shell mid­den. We are con­fi­dent of find­ing more hu­man re­mains as we dig fur­ther.

“We have so far dug up an area of 55 sq m. I am con­fi­dent of find­ing more items as we go,” he said yes­ter­day.

On April 17, Mokhtar and his team stum­bled upon bone frag­ments at a shell mid­den un­der a va­cated house dur­ing ground­break­ing works for a RM830,000 pre­his­toric gallery on the site.

Mok­thar’s team of ar­chae­ol­o­gists found a skull, a fe­mur bone and a rib cage. They also found many pot­tery bits from the era.

The state gov­ern­ment has since or­dered the build­ing of the gallery to be put on hold pend­ing fur­ther dig-ups by the ar­chae­o­log­i­cal team.

Mok­thar, the chief re­searcher of the Guar Kepah ar­chae­o­log­i­cal site, said the other two shell mid­dens dis­cov­ered at the site were not as in­tact as the third.

Chief Min­is­ter Lim Guan Eng said the gallery to dis­play the find­ings could be ready within five to 10 years. He said the state gov­ern­ment would make changes to the plans at the site.

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