Monday, February 18, 2008
posted by PabloPabla at 11:49 am

After writing about how every vote counts towards the future governance of this country, I stumbled upon Jeff Ooi's reply to an email posted by a reader. In case you've missed all the alternative news in the midst of BN related news posted in the mainstream media (which I won't blame you), Jeff Ooi - a popular Malaysian blogger at that, will be running for Parliament and word has it that he will be vying for a seat in Penang. The reader advised him not to contest in Penang saying that (my summary and I accept any imperfection or inaccuracy in it) the DAP's apparent full challenge for Penang seats would result in the losers being the Chinese.

Jeff wrote a well written reply on the role of an MP and / or State Assemblyman and how they serve the nation and people. You should read it to understand these roles so that you will be able to make a better decision on whom you should vote for this coming Malaysian General Elections. At the risk of repeating myself and what Jeff had said, the role of MPs are primarily to formulate decisions for the betterment of the nation. We have all heard about the announcement of the SCORE (Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy) worth RM110 billion by the PM last week with apparently no consultation with groups which may be affected by the developments as well as no documentation of the environmental impact these developments may cause. Till todate, I am not aware of any official response to these concerns. I would be interested to see this being debated in Parliament after the GE as this is not merely a state development issue but of national importance as well (on how much we emphasize preservation of environment at the expense of development as a nation).

As it is, development orders seem to be issued with impunity by local councils (read what Jeff says about who appoints local councillors in this country). Residents in Jalan Medang Tanduk in Bangsar / Medan Damansara are up in arms due to the latest development project which threatens their last remaining green lung. Likewise in Bukit Persekutuan / Federal Hill and slow but sure destruction of Bukit Kiara Park. I am not against development but development must come second after ensuring that it has minimal impact on the environment. That's where the role of the MP is so important. Not day to day job like ensuring drains are clear or that this student gets a deserving scholarship.

Talking about scholarship, the Star committed 2 full pages of stories (propaganda?) about how chinese students obtained PSD scholarships after assistance by the MCA. Even the President of MCA, Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting, took it upon himself to personally assist these deserving students who were initially turned down by PSD. Well, MCA did its job and that's commendable but did everyone ponder the question - if these students merited the scholarships, why weren't they given the scholarships when their applications were put in in the first place? Why must it waste valuable time and resource of political parties like MCA (and I am sure MIC and others) and their Presidents to appeal on their behalf? There is definitely something wrong with the scholarship screening process as it was reported that through MCA's efforts, 2100 students obtained scholarships over the last 7 years. That averages 300 students per year! That means the PSD failed to assess the merits of 300 students per year (and that is from MCA's report alone!). The person/s in charge of PSD should be held accountable and resign from such incompetency and inefficiency. But alas, accountability and resignation from accountability are alien to management and governance ala Malaysian style.

Need I say more?



At 5:04 am, Anonymous Chauncey Gardener

You have the right question on the scholarships issue and it should be posed to the MIC and MCA. Why is it that they are roped in, year in year out, to appeal to get these deserving students in ? Why do they (MCA & MIC) subject themselves to grovelling to the insitutions awarding these scholarships, with major cable pulling ?

Let's do away with this sandiwara and let Malaysians of all races feel that everyone has a fair shout. After all, the rakyat pays the taxes that fund most of the scholarships anyway !