Tiong fortifies SPDP’s claim on Marudi with RM1.5m allocation

OPINION: In the past – can’t quite remember exactly when, but it was very, very long ago – folk couldn’t help envying those coming in helicopters.

They loved the sight and sound of helicopters because they came with medicine or to airlift the sick and the dying.

Or, sometimes they just gave some lucky folk a free ride!

Many times they came just to throw down sweets and candies to us pupils.

Of course all too frequently, the teachers had more sweets and candies than us, which is okay, because they had children like us who loved candies.

Once in a while, it could be the governor or the chief minister, kind of stopping by to meet folk with no ceremony.

Then came a time when our perception of the helicopter, or rather the sight and sound of it, changed.

And that perception remains to this day, and that is, folk hate helicopters because they are being used to look at our lands and the resources in our forests and rivers.

Today, whenever a helicopter flies above villages, longhouses and farm huts, folk would say, look they are coming to survey our lands.

Or, look the companies are coming, the plantations are coming, the dams are coming.

They no longer come to visit us like they did in the distant past – to give medicine, sweets and candies.

Nowadays, they not only come to take things away from us, but cause us much hardship and sleepless nights.

There were even stories told of how helicopters came to whisk away some people’s daughters for God-knows-what purpose.

Naturally, the sight and sound of helicopters that once were like James Bond movies to the eyes and music to the ears, are bad news to folk in the longhouses and villages.

Tales like this are like the sub-plot of a main storyline, which in our context, is the struggle for power – political power.

You have political power, a world of opportunities is before you, including flying in helicopters, looking at lands, forest resources and beautiful women.

Imagine losing that power – and all those opportunities.

No, they can’t afford that, which is why they have been saying the same thing – that they are part of the BN team.

Of course they know they are not, but that’s the game, one of telling a white lie.

And so they have been saying it every day, at every opportunity and to every available audience, in the hope that their listeners would believe what they themselves actually never believe!

When a party is not a component member of Barisan Nasional, as in the case of Parti Tenaga Rakyat Sarawak (Teras) and United People’s Party (UPP), it can’t help repeating something that it is not, especially if that something is a matter of life and death.

That’s the situation facing Teras and UPP now. They can’t help saying they are members of BN again and again because, the time they decide they should stop behaving like an old vinyl record plate with a broken grove, they have lost the fight and they are as good as dead.

So whether they or you, especially you, like it or not, people like William Mawan and Wong Soon Koh will continue to repeat, repeat and repeat – we are BN, look at us we are still ministers and assistant ministers and we still approve projects, distribute grants and fly in government helicopters.

Yes, fly in helicopters, too.

They know too well Teras and UPP are not BN members. They have been trying to find their way in but their problem is they thought they could just barge their way through.

BN, however, doesn’t allow gate-crashing because that could mean some members inside could get trampled.

It has strict rules regarding new admission to prevent members from being trampled by either those new to the house rule or those too familiar with it and think they know where to bend it.

The way things are shaping, the BN’s door is better kept shut because members within are getting stronger by the day as the 11th state election nears.

Look at Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party (SPDP), the party that hardly a year ago was struggling with the shock of losing five of its assemblymen to Teras, now languishing in no man’s land.

Mawan’s recent visit to Rumah Buddy in Marudi where he was purportedly received by more than 2,000 people pales compared to SPDP president Tiong King Sing’s visit to Rumah Kompani Agon, Tanjung Mawang in Ulu Teru, Tinjar.

Mawan came to announce a building fund of RM100,000 for Rumah Buddy while Marudi assemblyman Sylvester Entri insisted he had been fair in his distribution of financial allocations and development projects.

But Tiong came announcing a federal allocation of RM1.5 million saying he was compelled to step in and seek help from the federal government because Sylvester had neglected many areas in the constituency.

“I have received complaints and heard grudges from the ground that there are many things left unsettled in the constituency as the current YB (elected representative) is deaf to the voices of people.

“I heard there are many things that are being ignored by the assemblyman here, so I have asked Datu Penguang to help compile a list for the urgent needs and applied for the allocation to rectify the problems,” Tiong was quoted as saying.

Dr Penguang Manggil, the permanent secretary to Local Government and Community Development Ministry, is the candidate identified by SPDP to stand in Marudi in the next state election.

I can’t wait for Tiong to visit Pakan where medical practitioner Dr Jawi Jenggut has been named as SPDP’s candidate.

Or to Tasik Biru where the local branch of SPDP has resolved to nominate Sarawak Rivers Board chairman William Jinep.

For Tiong, politics is serious business, and his visit to Marudi shows how serious he is about getting the seat back for SPDP.-The Ant Daily

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