Kukup is an old Fishing Village. The residents were mainly from the province of "Jinmen" (Golden Gate), Southern part of mainland of China. Hence the whole village uses "Jinmen" dialect as their common daily communal language. The "Jinmen" dialect is a type of the "Fujian" dialect.
Residents including other dialect group here speak only "Jinmen". This is rather unique and a speciality for the community. This wholly occupied by the Chinese fishermen once used the common Chinese special way of organising
the community. As the elders said, the community of Kukup was first organized using the Chinese traditional Secret Society way. The whole community was under an organisation called "Da Gong Si" (The Big Company) represented by all headmen of the Secret Societies.
All disputes and quarrels were settled in the "Da Gong Si" by the headmen. The "Da Gong Si" Located at the central part of the village, and is now a historical memory of the elders. It was said that the "Da Gong Si" contributed
a lot to the village. All fishing boats, shops and traders came to the village had to pay a certain amount of contribution. This contribution was then used to built and develop the local Chinese Primary School. This tradition way of
contribution though is no more in existence, the tradition spirit of contributing to the school is still very strong. At present, the Kukup is under a Residents Committee (JKKK = Jawatankuasa Keselamatan & Kemajuan Kampung (in English, The Village Safety and Development Committee)
headed by Mr. Tan Soo Puan, or commonly known as Mr. William. Mr. Tan was appointed by the Johor State Government as the "Ketua Masyarakat" (Head of the Community) of Kukup. He is also the MCA Kukup Branch Chairman, and he is also the Chairman of the
Board of Directors of Ken Boon Chinese Primary School.
About Mr. Tan Soo Puan, P.P.N.
Mr. Tan Soo Puan, the local village headman, was appointed as the Ketua Masyarakat (Malay word, meaning: Head of Community) in 1997 by the Johor State Government. He was born in 1953 and educated locally. He is fluent and with very good command of Chinese, English and Malay languages. Presently he is a well known businessman operating a sundry provision shop in Kukup.
As a headman locally respected by the villagers, Mr. Tan is commonly known as William. Though being a man of high social status, Mr. William is a amiable, friendly and helpful person. Anyone travelling in Kukup and meet any difficulties may contact him in his sundry provision shop named Yong Soon Seng.
Locally the village is managed by a Social Organisation known as Da Gong Si (the Big Company) or The Villagers Cumminity Committee. Mr. Tan is the Chairman. Now if you are travelling in Kukup, and as you enter into the heart of the village, you will notice a temple of Guang Gong and Chi Wang Ye. This is the meeting place of the village, and the official address of the Da Gong Si.
As the highest administrative organisation, the Da Gong Si is responsible for the taking care of all disputes of the villagers, as well as the village development. Nowaday, all roads leading into the village are built with concretes. This is so because of the careful planning of Mr. Tan.
You contribute also towards the village development fund if you stay in the Chalet. That was so because Mr. Tan decided and resolved in the Da Gong Si's General Meeting that all chalet had to contribute a certain amount for each tourist staying in chalet. This fund was used to built the concrete bridge road and also all repair works, as well as developing task in the village.
Supported by the majority, Mr. Tan other than being appointed as the Ketua Masyarakat, is also the Chiarman of the Parents & Teachers Association of Ken Boon Chinese Primary School, Chairman of the Malaysia Chinese Association, and Advisor for many organisations in Kukup. These organisations include Association, temples and others.
In Kukup, Mr. Tan acted as a middle man between the Government Authourity and the local residents. With his ability to speak fluent Malay and English languages, he also helps the local in all means.
As the headman of the Community, Mr. Tan not only concern with the development of the village, but his main concern is the local primary Chinese School. I got acquitance with Mr. Tan when I was the Headmaster of the School. His keen enthusiasm towards the school was the main factor of my respect to him. And that was also the main influence for my creating of the homepage.