Saturday, May 24, 2008

Dewan Undangan Negeri a Soap Opera House?

Dewan Undangan Negeri sitting in progress

The Dewan Undangan Negeri should be the place where serious business was discussed and the people’s problems be brought forward to be discussed and solved. But the recent concluded sitting of the Dewan Undangan Negri Sarawak from 5th – 14th May, 2008 were full of jokes, play acting and fish market environment. We called ourselves Yang Berhormat, but, did we really behaved one? We heard shouting matches and some filthy words such as “shit!”, “bodoh!” “Kurang Ajar!” and "monkey" from the mouths of people whom we called Yang Berhormat. Debates in the Dewan seemed not been taken seriously and much time had been wasted. I could even see that some Yang Berhormat when shouting and pointing fingers did not do these seriously, but, in actual fact they were seen laughing or smiling when doing these. If we don’t say that these were play acting, then, what were these? The people who elected us had high hope on us to bring their grouses to the august House with the hope that all problems affecting the State and the people could be properly addressed.

Yes, there could be time that we need to shout, but, we must be serious when we do this. However, this was not the case with many Yang Berhormat. They just wanted some drama to catch the attention of the august House or maybe the press. The end result was that the plights of the people were not answered and issues raised were not properly addressed or ever addressed at all. I regret, the hope of the people that elected us was really shattered like broken glasses. How, I wish that the people who elected their representatives attend the proceedings and watch from the gallery of the august House and to see for themselves how these Yang Berhormat performed and I hope the public should not depend on what they heard from people or the press alone. This was not good for the state and the people and if we keep on like this, our state will not progress well.

The Ministers who were supposed and expected to give answers to questions performed below par and many questions put forward were not answered. They just gave evasive answers and got away with them because the Speaker said it was a parliamentary practice that once the Minister gave a reply to the question asked, whether the answer was correct or not, it was considered that the question had been answered! So to say, a stupid answer was also an answer and the matter had been answered!

Tan Sri Jabu with Datuk James Masing and Hj. Hamden

When we sought clarifications or raised points of order, some Ministers ignored us and dared not take up the challenge. DCM Tan Sri Jabu, for instance, even promised us that he would allow us time to ask questions at the end of his speech and he promised to answer us, but, when he finished his speech, this DCM and Yang Berhormat from Layar discourteously sat down and refused to entertain us. Tan Sri Jabu was always very fond of this tactic and each time managed to escape from us. DCM Tan Sri Jabu is representing the constituency of Layar. No wonder when some of us in the Opposition who were annoyed and angry with him, not only had to shout at him and the Speaker to catch their attention, but, when things went so fast and hot, many times some of us could not pronounce the word “Layar” correctly.

Instead of addressing the DCM as “Honourable Member from Layar” some addressed the said Honourable member as “Honourable Member from Liar!” In a previous sitting, I had this matter brought to the attention of the August House hoping that Honourable Members of the august House could behave and correct themselves. This definitely had embarrassed the Deputy Chief Minister, but, I was not there with the intention to embarrass him or anyone, because, no matter what, we should accorded Tan Sri Jabu the respect he should deserved as he was elected by the people. This is because in politics although our opinion in the Opposition may differ from those in the government, but, politics is about issues and how to solve issues for the good of the people and the state.

With this, I hope the public would properly evaluate for themselves and not be misled by the performance of some Yang Berhormat in the august House who did not take things for the good of the people who elected them seriously, and instead, by play acting in the august House.

Although I am pin pointing at others as if I am arrogant and a perfect Yang Berhormat, but, please do not construe me wrongly, because being a human being I am also not perfect. Being elected by the people and paid from public fund, I also want people to evaluate my performance inside and outside the Dewan and I wish people can come with constructive criticisms or ideas about my performance so that I could correct and improve myself for the good of the people and the state. This is because I just want to give my best and wish not waste my time as we already entered the third year in the Dewan. We only have about two more years to go before finishing our term, and I hope I will not disappoint the people of Sarawak and I also hope that I shall also not disappoint the people who elected me. You all had put your trust on me and I shall maintain my standard and keep my oath of office.

During the sitting of the august House, a number of questions that I had brought up such as the tragedy in Bau Lake some 30-40 years ago in which a bus plunged and drown all students inside the said bus was not answered. Likewise, the promise or proposal by the BN government through the mayor of MBKS during the election campaign in May 2006 to turn the riverbanks of Sungai Maong into a “Garden Paradise” under the concept of “For A Better Homeland” did not receive any mention at all by the Ministers. The queries by me about the uncompleted upgrading of roads, such Jalan Kim Chu Shin Road, Jalan Sin San Tu, Jalan Ha Sha Lung in Batu Kawa area, which were misleadingly claimed to have been properly done and completed by some politicians were not answered. Datuk Yong Khoon Seng and YB Tan Joo Phoi were there to inspect the road and since YB Tan Joo Phoi is also the Chairman of Padawan Municipal Council, he could have addressed this mattrer in the Dewan to clear the air. If not, then, the ministers should come and clarify the many issues in connection with my allegations.

Jalan Ha Sha Lung

Jalan Kim Chu Shin

Are YB Datuk Yong Khoon Seng and YB Tan Joo Phoi going the say that the resealing of this road had been completed?

Likewise, the half completed resealing of roads in the Batu Lintang Constituency undertaken by the contractors such as Jalan Tengah and Lorong Poh Kwang Park 8B and the poor drainage system of the said Lorong Poh Kwang Park 8B itself which I addressed, was also ignored by the Cabinet. I also regret that the drainage system that caused floods all these years at Lorong 4 and Lorong 4A Jalan Angsana in the Sg.Maong area were also not addressed at all by the ministers.

Blocked Drain at Lorong Poh Kwong Park 8B

Money paid, work not done?

Lorong Poh Kwong Park 8B

Therefore, it was for these above reasons that I proposed to the Dewan that the debates and speeches in the Dewan be broadcast and telecast live so that those who behaved like monkeys could be heard and seen as monkeys in televisions before the very people who elected them. However, I also regret that this request was never been debated at all in the Dewan.

So, the ten days sitting of the Dewan was about drama, jokes, and fish markets stories and not so much about addressing the plights of the people. Much time had been wasted and public money was not worthily spent for the good of the people and the state. To me, people in politics should take politics seriously and not take politics for personal glory, jokes, drama and publicity.

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