by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MF for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Penang on Saturday, February19, 1994:
Cabinet’s directive to all local authorities over clogged drains is an admission of failure of the nominated system of local government to provide basic facilities to ratepayers
The Cabinet’s directive to all local authorities to clear clogged drains is an admission of double failure:
Failure of the nominated system of local, government to provide basic facilities to ratepayers; and
Failure of the respective Chief Ministers and Mentri-Mentri Besar to provide overall direction and supervision of the nominated local authorities.
The Penang Island provides the best example, as the ‘clogged drains’ problem on the island, is not only a health concern but a major cause for flash floods.
However, Penang Chief Minister, Dr. Koh Tsu Koon has not shown any interest or concern about the ‘dogged-drain’ problem as giving directives to the MPPP to resolve the problem.
The problem is probably more ‘political’ in nature, because Tsu Koon does not have the power to exercise authority-over the MPPP President, Datuk Tan Gim Hwa, who is his p-oliticai ‘boss’ in Penang Gerakan.
This has resulted in the absence of any State Government check on the MPPP and its President, Datuk Tan Gim Kwa, making the MPPP President more and more high-handed and insensitive to the problems of the ratepayers.
The chaos of the Municipal bus service in the last four days, which is completely avoidable and unnecessary is a good case in point.
An effective Chief Minister would have heard the outraged cries of the bus commuters, called up the MPPP President and directed him to immediately double the buses on the roads to minimise the hardships and inconvenience caused to the 30,000 bus commuters with the warning that the preparation for privatisation of the bus service can never be accepted as an excuse for creating chaos in an essential public service.
May be, the Penang Municipal bus service chaos would have to be brought to the attention.of the Cabinet first before Tsu Koon could have the authority to act!
DAP calls for the terms of the privatisation of the Municipal bus service to South Johore Amalgamated Holdings End to be made public
The MPPP has said that there would be no fare increase when Syarikat Kenderaan Juara takes over the Penang Municipal Council bus service on March 1.
DAP calls for the full terms of the privatisation of the Municipal bus service to South Johore Amalgamated Holdings Bhd. to be made public.
This is for the public to scrutinise the privatisation terms to ascertain whether their interests had been safeguarded and to meet the principles of accountability and transparency.
What guarantees are there that the MPPP would ensure that the privatised bus service would be caring, courteous and efficient?
The MPPP is in fact making a very bad start for the privatised bus service on the Penang Island, If the MPPP could allow the 30,000 bus commuters to be stranded for the two weeks before the start of the privatisation bus service by operating a skeletal service, then there is nothing to stop Syarikat Kenderaan Juara from following the uncaring, discourteous and inefficient philosophy of the MPPP sometime in the future.
The Municipal privatisation of the garbage collection had not worked satisfactorily in many areas – and some public streets have been transformed into rubbish dumps, which are not only eye-sores but a health threat to the neighbourhood.
Will the privatisation of the Municipal bus service end up like the privatisation of the garbage collection?