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The Ukit people is a tribe found in Sarawak, Malaysia. They are a small minority people who until recently were nomads in the rain forests of Borneo. Some were settled at Rumah Ukit on the upper reaches of the Batang Balui or Balui River. Most of the Ukits are found in the Upper Rajom and Tatau rivers, Baleh, Sarawak. The Ukit people were also regarded as a sub-group of the purported Klemantan people.[2]

Ukit people
Dayak Ukit / Orang Bukit / Bekiau
Sarawak; a Ukit tribesman. Photograph. Wellcome V0037430.jpg
An Ukit tribesman from Sarawak, Malaysia.
Total population
120 (1981)[1]
Regions with significant populations
 Malaysia (Sarawak)
Ukit, Malaysian, Sarawak Malay
Folk religion (predominantly), Christianity
Related ethnic groups
Orang Ulu, Bukitan people

The Ukit's population is small in numbers and suffer potential extinction due to many of the tribesmen being killed a long time ago. Heavy losses in war to stronger Dayak tribes in Borneo (Iban, Kayan and others) resulted them being chased out of their homelands (believed to be the Saribas, Kalaka and Krian areas). Intermarriage with other tribes is also another factor for their decreasing population. Today, the Ukit population is estimated to be only about 120. However, there may still be an unknown number of Ukit living in their traditional way as forest nomads.

In 1880 the Ukits were encountered by the English explorer Harry De Windt who described them as follows:[3]


  1. ^ Raymond G. Gordon Jr., ed. (2005). Ethnologue: Languages of the World, Fifteenth edition. SIL International. ISBN 1-55671-159-X.
  2. ^ John Alexander Hammerton; Dr. Charles Hose (1922). Peoples of All Nations. Concept Publishing Company. ISBN 81-7268-156-9.
  3. ^ Harry De Windt "On the Equator"


  • O'Hanlon Redmond (1985): Into The Heart of Borneo. Pp. 143–4, 171–183. Penguin (Salamander Press 1985)