PRESS STATEMENT 14 MARCH 2013
The Barisan Nasional politicians seem to be on the defensive lately, their most popular strategy being to engage in the politics of fear and intimidation. Abdul Karim Hamzah’s comment that constituencies under the opposition would get less attention is a case in point. This is, to me political irresponsibility and will not be practised by the opposition. We believe that every constituency is entitled to its fair share of economic development and allocation regardless of the political affiliation of its elected representative.
Abdul Karim Hamzah and politicians could not be more mistaken. It is precisely of the opposition’s strength and pressure that the government is finally waking up to its terrible performance track record over the past few decades. It is now in frantic damage control mode, getting ideas from the opposition’s manifesto and implementing them as their own, examples being the implementation of minimum wage and reduction of car prices. Even the BR1M assistance was borrowed from Penang’s policy of assistance to the hardcore poor, the difference being that the government is now using cash handouts indiscriminately to try to influence the voters whilst the Penang government’s focus was on helping the needy.
Related to the issue of the influence of the opposition, I was pleased to read in today’s papers that the Limbang hospital will be upgraded to a specialist hospital, giving priority to gynaecology and obstetrics facilities. In the last DUN sitting, I had brought up the problems being faced by the people in Limbang with the shortage of doctors and medical facilities there and I am happy with the response of the government. I hope what was announced would be implemented accordingly not a mere political rhetoric in view of the impending PRU-13.
In a way, we cannot blame the BN too much for their constant illogical attacks on the opposition for they are now squeezed between a rock and a hard place. After all, it must be frustrating for them to have as their national leader a man who is known now to be the most indecisive Prime Minister of the country, while at the state level, their leader is reputed to be the most corrupt in this part of the world. These leaders and their cronies have led our country to be record holders in corruption, illegal capital outflow and soaring national debt; its citizens constantly worried about the high crime rates and increasing cost of living, and lately concerned about the lax border security controls.
Even the Chief Minister of Sarawak has acknowledged (Borneo Post 12 March 2013) that Sarawak has a serious problem with brain drain. He is only now starting to address the issue. By this admission, he is acknowledging that Sarawakians have left the state in huge numbers. This brain drain is caused by the lack of, or unequal, educational, economic and employment opportunities brought about by the government’s unfair policies and the practices, not to mention the actions of a select group of politicians and cronies in amassing their family fortunes at the expense of the ordinary people and the native landowner’s lands and living.
The opposition by contrast offers the politics of hope, and the politics of reality. We will carry out our promises to undo the wrongs done by the BN government and bring the country forward to real prosperity for all. The promises set out in our manifesto are not mere talk – they are achievable and will be carried out by us if given a mandate by the people. Malaysians deserve better than what they have been given by the Barisan National and their scandal-prone, corruption-tainted leaders.
ADUN N70 Ba’ Kelalan /
Chairman, PKR Sarawak