Thursday, December 30, 2010

Trip to a Slanting House

When I took off to Sg. Apong this morning, I was expecting to see something unpleasant after Toni bin Bahram contacted me yesterday. He told me it is an emergency and need my help urgently.

When I walked up the wooden planks to his house, I observed that some houses in the front were alright but it get worst I walked deeper in.

I had expected Toni’s house to be in a bad condition but I did not expect it to be in a dilapidated state. The house slanted towards the river looking like it is going to fall any minute.

Toni introduced me to his wife, Narani bte Keram and son Adam, a pleasant young man who smiles a lot despite his condition. Adam is the only one who is educated in the family and has yet to finish his studies in Unimas. He is the family’s hope to get them out of their poverty.

There were more unpleasant sights that greeted me. The kitchen is forever flooded especially during king tide.

Toni said there is no peace as long as they are in the house. He said anytime of the day, the house might just give way and collapse. One of his grandson had fallen into a broken hole in the house and was saved by a neighbor.

What anger me is that for the past three years, Toni has been to the Ministry of Rural development under DCM Tan Sri Alfred Jabu and the Resident asking for assistance. There were assurances and no help was given. For four decades, BN is the ruling government and there is no end in sight for the hardcore poor.

Toni said he had no choice as he ran out of faith with the government.

Having seven children and working in Bermas, Toni was forced to quit after an accident. He now has to work as a security guard to feed the large brood of family. Four of his children are still with him. Only two are working while one is jobless and one studying. Two grandchildren are also with him.

Earning a pay of RM650 while his two children earn less, the family is living from hand to mouth.

Just recently, Chief Minister boasted of the State’s status, how the income of each household will grow and how rich the state is.

Yes, I totally agreed with him on the latter one, the rich Sarawak full of natural resources but who benefit from it.

There are a handful of rich leaders and their cronies, a large number of ordinary people who slave and slog like the majority of us and a big number who is dirt poor like Toni. Is the State government so high up that they cannot look down to see people like us and Toni. How many Tonis are there in Sarawak and the government is neglecting them.

Toni is a Malay and despite the BN government shouts of Malay supremacy, Toni in his rundown house look far from being supreme or well fed or rich. The shouting is all a slogan to allow the top leaders to continue their lives of riches while the rest of the people remain poor. The gap of the rich and the poor widens and this is dangerous –for the rich.

The country has 40% household whose income is less than RM1,500 per month. Out of four, three are Malays and Bumi.

When reporters asked Toni how much privilege did he get for being a Malay. Tony answered immediately that he did get a number of free items, that is the sunshine, the air and the rain. The rest, he is as ‘poor’ and as ‘under-privilege’ like the non-Malays.

Whatever it takes, I am going to help Toni to apply for the scheme meant for the poor. A neighbor of his, a teacher got a sum of money from the Ministry of Rural development to repair and renovate the house. If a teacher can get it, what about a poor security guard. What is so “odd” about him that he did not deserve to be helped?

Monday, December 20, 2010

Infighting will hamper PR Petra Jaya takeover plan


PENANG – Seat allocation among Pakatan Rakyat (PR) has to be resolved as soon as possible so that the right candidates fielded would see the reality of PR taking over Petra Jaya, said State Treasurer, Violet Yong.

Representing DAP Sarawak in the PR, Violet who is also Pending State Assemblyman said this afternoon that there is no compromise on candidates as only the right ones who had grassroots support and the people’s welfare at heart would be voted in.

She said coupled with the spirit of Sibu by election with all component PR working together, the mission of the march to Putra Jaya would be accomplished.

Saying that time is limited here, she hoped that the selection of the constituency and the candidacy among themselves would be done soon so that they could get their machinery ready.

Infighting, she said hampers the path to take over the present government and despite losses in the recent by election in Galas and Batu Sapi, Violet said Sibu could be used as a yardstick to keep the momentum going for the State.

“Everyone has differences but we should unite ourselves for a better Malaysia, a better tomorrow. We owe it not to ourselves but our future generations to put our country in place to be shared by all races, as equals in Malaysia,” she added.

If PR is not united, she said, the people would look at them as no better than Barisan Nasional and thus the PR politicians are failing their duty to the rakyat assuring them of change for the better.

She said with the by election of Tenang coming up soon, the PR should not speculate on the result but rather each and everyone of them should be working to prepare the Sarawak State election.

Expressing her concern of the general perception of Malaysians, she said the fall of Perak and the few PR wakil rakyat who jumped ship had dented the credibility of the PR to a certain extend.

Saying that not only the people in Peninsula Malaysia are watching, so too are the people from Sabah and Sarawak.

“It is important that we regroup as by internal fightings, the people perceived us to be the same as BN. The news media had already painted the PR as not only not better than the BN but also evil.

Citing an example, she said when four MPs from PR were suspended from Parliament on 16th December 2010, the BN controlled media accused our action to defend ourselves as the “tyranny of the minority”.

Repeated lies, she said would become truth as the people could be gullible, especially the simple folks in rural Sarawak.

“Out of 222 Parliamentary seats, 31 will come from Sarawak. We have only 2 MPs so far, and a lot has to be done in order to ensure that we are not the “fixed deposit” of the BN,”

Sarawak she added is the 4th poorest state in Malaysia and infrastructure is 20 years behind Peninsula Malaysia.

She said a lot of the rural folks have no roads, no medical facility, no electricity and no water supply while a number did not even have homes to live in. In some Chinese areas, the school buildings are infested by termites and unsuitable for students. “As responsible political parties, we must help see that the rural folks in Sarawak are not discriminated against. They are equally citizens of Malaysia,” she added.

The Sibu win had been a windfall for the people as the federal government allocated RM5m to Independent Chinese Secondary Schools in Sibu, an unprecedented RM10m for Chinese Primary Schools in Sibu.

“Then we saw the reduction of land lease renewal premium, announced by the Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib on the eve of the by-election, roads being constructed in many towns and cities in Sarawak where opposition parties are strong. Yesterday, we see the coming of a new political era in Sarawak, when the Chief Minister announced an allocation of 2000 hectares of land for Independent Chinese Secondary Schools. Even land acquisition process had been halted with promise of better compensation,” she added.

Violet pointed out that this goes to show that BN knows that with strong opposition, they could not afford to neglect the plights of the people as opposition party would revealed it.

“If the change did not come this time, I am worry that the Penans will continue to be neglected, the Malay and Melanau kampongs continue to remain poor. Many of the Iban areas are not well looked after because the Ibans YBs are tolling the line of the Chief Minister. Thus, change we must to ensure all races enjoy the fruits of development, not just the top few. We can do it together,” she added.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

杨薇讳:产油国未受惠? 马油价涨幅高于狮城

杨薇讳:产油国未受惠? 马油价涨幅高于狮城
















DAP tells Taib to heed Najib's advice

Tue, 07 Dec 2010 10:06

Tuesday 07/12/2010 Source:

By Joseph Tawie

KUCHING: Sarawak’s Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud should listen to the advice of Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak and discard the “four ailments”, namely delusion, amnesia, inertia and arrogance, if Barisan Nasional wants to continue to weild its iron-tight power in the state.

DAP treasurer Violet Yong said the 'four ailments' were as rampant in the Taib administration and was turning the people against BN.

“There are enough examples for delusionary acts by the state government. The construction of the 12 dams is an example of delusion and the arrogance of the state government.

“The dams are irresponsible and unnecessary. By constructing the dams, Taib is going against the people’s desire. He does not care about the sufferings as a result of them being displaced.

“He thinks he is the government and that he has the power to do what he likes,” said Yong, who is the state assemblywoman for Pending.

She said that if the state BN government is a people-friendly administration, then it should stop building the dams.

“The government is yet to resolve the issue of displaced people from the Bakun dam development. These affected people should have been settled first.

"The government should have come up with a proper scheme in order to improve their livelihood and their income level.

"But they have not done this. They have allowed the people to suffer. Look at the natives at Sungai Asap, and how they have suffered as a result of the Bakun dam,” she said.

Yong said Taib had forgotten the primary thrust of the 1Malaysia concept which was ‘people first, performance now’.

She said as far as the BN government in Sarawak was concerned it was "people last and pockets first.”

Land grabs

She said another sore point with the people was BN's arrogance in grabbing native customary rights land belonging to the people.

"Taib must listen to Najib’s advice, otherwise what Najib is saying would be just another slogan in order to hoodwink the people," she said.

Yong was responding to Najib's advice to BN component parties to rid themselves of the “four ailments” before the people’s love for the BN turned into hatred, hope into anger, and support towards opposition.

Touching on the withdrawal of fuel and sugar subsidies, she sarcastically said it was "BN's gift to the people" for giving them victories in the two recent by-elections.

“This is a gift by the BN government. This is the price you have to pay for supporting BN,” she said.

Yong believed the recent price hike in the raw materials was unreasonable and one that will have a great impact on the poor people. Sarawak is the fourth poorest state in Malaysia.

“It is unreasonable, because the government has not come out with a balance policy which will help the lower income group to meet the price hike,” she added.