The slowness of the JPN to register Sarawakians without IC is not entirely due to transport problems eg even the number of such unregistered citizens-easily estimated from those rejected applicants, cannot be accurately supplied by the JPN! Also the rate of on-going registrations are made state secrets unaccessible by the public. Then the JPN deiced that they will not divulge the reasons for rejecting applications-creating a fertile ground for corruption! So after some long years the problems still persist. So how long more should people put up with such lack of transparency that apparently cover up its inefficiencies? Adding helicopters to its service seems to be a plausible to speed up its travel to the interior-but the `interior’ of the JPN bureacracy perhaps need more than helicopters to navigate! The higher speed of the JPN in Sabah to give over a million of citizens documents to clear cases of foreigners highlight that there are more than what meet the eyes when it come to registration of undocumented local citizens. Perhaps the `helicopter’ here is taken to hold a different meaning which require higher charges from the applicants?????
JPN plans to use choppers to reach remote areas
Posted on January 14, 2011, Friday
KUCHING: The National Registration Department (JPN) has planned to acquire the service of helicopters as part of its efforts to intensify its outreach programme to help the people in the remote parts of the state obtain their personal documents.
JPN director-general Datuk Alwi Ibrahim revealed that the department would be discussing with the Royal Malaysian Police and Malaysian Armed Forces to see if they could assist by providing them helicopters for the outreach operations.
“We feel that a helicopter service is necessary as some of the places in the interior of Sarawak are unreachable by roads.
“Some places are only connected by long and winding rivers or timber tracks.
“Travelling to such areas is not only expensive but also time consuming. Our mobile team spends several hours in their journey alone and this can be very tiring,” said Alwi.
He said this when meeting representatives from the print and electronic media at the State JPN headquarters in Simpang Tiga here yesterday.
He said that the department was fully aware of the communication problems they would face in carrying out the outreach programme and that it could be minimised with the use of helicopters.
“However, as we all know, to hire a helicopter will be even more expensive and what we are going to do now is we will talk to the police and the army to see if they can assist us by having a joint operation with them,” he disclosed.
He revealed that for last year alone, RM20 million was allocated to JPN Sarawak to cover the expenses in the outreach programmes.
“This allocation involves the allowance and wages of the staff, transportation, foods and so on. At least RM3 million is spent annually for the rental of four wheel drive vehicles and river transport,” he added.
Earlier, he said that the JPN mobile unit was first introduced in 2004 and all these while the personnel involved in the project had been using off-road vehicles and boats when travelling to the upper reaches of the state.
He said that for the whole of this year the department had planned to conduct 67 outreach programmes in their state and the areas expected to be covered include the Penan settlements in Baram.