The campaign for Sarawak State Elections has almost started with the PBB president, through his role as Chief Minister in the State government, announced the allocation of 2000 hectare of land to Independent Secondary Chinese schools, and the Bako land acquisition being slowed down to look for a better `formula’ of compensation.
On the other hand the Opposition Baru Bian announced his reply in the form of thousands of CDs and tons of leaflets which will flood the long houses and urban areas.
Meanwhile the tuai rumahs,penghulus , pemancas, temenggongs are given crash course in luxury hotels to coach them in electioneering within their areas of jurisdiction, from a single long house to much larger areas. They are being `trained’ or `refreshed’ as BN’s campaign`machinery’ though their appointment and employment is done through the government. These `mechinery’ is controlled by the District Officers who will play the role of returning Officers during elections. The entire set-up is stacked up against the Opposition who don’t have half a foot inside the hall of power.
The state elections have all but started without a whistle.
The delay in the calling of an election is perhaps due to PBB president’s hope that the Federal Government will dissolve to hold synchronized elections with Sarawak State Elections(see previous post), thus deflecting the attacks from the Federal Opposition on PBB.
2,000ha for Chinese schools
Posted on December 19, 2010, Sunday(Borneo Post)
Chief Minister pledges to exempt these independent schools from land lease renewal premiums
KUCHING: The state government will alienate 2,000ha of land for Chinese independent schools.
Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud also pledged to exempt these schools from land lease renewal premiums during a dialogue session with the Chinese community, mostly from the education sector on Friday night.
Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Dr George Chan yesterday confirmed that Taib had made the pledges during the dialogue.
“Yeah, yeah, that’s right,” said Dr Chan when confirming Taib’s promises to the state’s Chinese education sector.
Among the cabinet members present during the dialogue were Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfred Jabu Numpang and Minister of Public Utilities Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hassan.
It is learnt that the 2,000ha would be granted to Chinese independent schools as a means to reduce their financial burden.
After Friday’s dialogue, Taib told reporters he acknowledged that Chinese independent schools are ‘short of money’ and had to rely heavily on their respective boards of management.
He said he would liaise with the federal government to come up with more assistance for Chinese independent schools in addition to aid from the state.
“The Chinese have expressed their problems and I am very sympathetic with the problems.
“At the same time, they also have to know our capacity to solve the problem is limited. So the result is, I know your problem, you know my capacity. We find out how our capacity can match your needs,” he explained.
Taib added he understood Chinese issues quite well.
“Except that I have never gone down to listen to them first-hand.”
On whether he would have similar dialogues with the Chinese community in Sibu and Miri, he said: “Maybe next time, okay. But the trouble is election’s so near, I will see then.”
There are presently 14 Chinese independent schools throughout the state, of which, five are located here — Chung Hua Middle School (CHMS) No.1, CHMS No.3, CHMS No.4, SM Min Lit Batu Kawa and Serian Public Secondary School.