Speech by DAP Secretary-General and Member of Parliament for Bandar Melaka, Lim Kit Siang, at a DAP Public Rally at Mambang di-Awan, Kampar, on Sunday, 7th July 1974 at 9 p.m.
DAP calls on the Government to abolish surtax on motor spare parts, tyres and other accessories and the slash the import duties on diesel to prevent increase of bus and taxi fares and other transport charges to forestall another inflationary spiral
With the recent government approval for another eight cents a gallon increase for diesel, taxi operators, bus companies and other transport firms are pressing for an increase of fares and transport charges.
This will not only add to the very heavy burden of the poor, but will in turn spark off another chain action of price increases.
The government is duty-bound to take swift action to prevent the purchasing power of the poor from being slashed further, bringing to a lower level their standard of living.
I suggest that officials of the Ministry of Communications and the Ministry of Primary Industries should meet to work out package deal to prevent increases in bus fares, taxi fares and transport charges.
This package deal can include the following elements: abolish the surtax on motor spare parts, tyres and other motor accessories which have increased to fantastic prices, sometimes by as high as 100 per cent. The government should also abolish and reduce the import duty on diesel so that the taxi operators and the transport people do not have to pass on the increased costs to the consumers.
National Front Government should solve the new village land titles problem by the end of Second Malaysia Plan
Although there had been two Ministers for New Villages, the problem of land and land titles for the 900,000 new villagers in Malaysia remain outstanding one.
This problem can be grouped into three categories:
(i) New villagers who have not been given titles to the land they had occupied for the last 24 years;
(ii) New villagers whose 21-year titles have not been extended, and whose titles have already expired or about to expire.
(iii) The increase in new village population who need new allocation of land to make a economic living.
It is shocking that although new villagers had lived for about 24 years, there are still many who have not been issued with titles at all – and this despite the appointment of two Minister of New Villages, this problem is still of major proportion.
It is no wonder therefore that when the first problem has still to be resolved, very few had been able to get their titles extended from 21 tenure to 66-year or 99-year titles. It is even less wonder that for the increase in new village population very few had been granted land.
What is needed is a Cabinet decision to give urgency and priority to the Ministry of New Villages as the instrument to change the face of new villages, from backward, depressed economic areas into flourishing, prosperous and thriving communities. To do this, the Prime Minister, Tun Razak, should elevate the status and importance of the Ministry of New Villages, which is at present the most junior and most inconsequential Ministry, and give it sufficient funds.
A few days ago, Lee San Choon told from 11 Perak new villages that his Ministry had spent $6 million on minor projects for the 450 new villages. This is a ridiculous amount. For the Pesta Pembangunan and the Islamic Foreign Minister’s Conference alone, more than $6 million must have been spent. Surely, 900,000 people, whose for a generation had been neglected, deserves a better deal from the National Front government.