Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Perak gives out first batch of permanent land titles - Star

IPOH: Dec 31, 2008 By CHAN LI LEEN

The Pakatan Rakyat-led Perak government has given out 11 permanent land titles to residents of new villages in the state despite the objections of the Federal Government.

State senior executive councillor Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham said the first batch of applicants received their land titles from Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin at a ceremony in Gerik on Tuesday.

They were from Kampung Baru Kuala Rui.

The 11 are the first batch of 47,000 lot owners in 134 new villages and 102,000 lot owners in 349 planned villages eligible for automatic conversion of their titles from leasehold to freehold.

Ngeh told reporters here on Wednesday that the conversion of land titles had been carried out legally, and noted that the state’s panel of at least 10 lawyers had vetted the entire process.

“Everything we have done is legal and, with due respect, we would like to note that the Deputy Prime Minister (Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak) had erred in his legal opinion,” he added.

Ngeh revealed that titles to 10 other plots of 1.6ha under a cluster-farming scheme in Tanjung Rimbun had been given out to Malay farmers.

“Again, the state government would like to stress that it does not practise racial policies. Everything it does is for the rakyat (people),” he said.

Ngeh added that 320 plots covering 598.8ha would be given out under the scheme.

Later, at a function to present aid to 400 poor and orphaned children, Nizar said as far as the state was concerned, it had not broken any laws in giving out the titles.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Perak mulls S'pore's home programme for senior citizens - Sun

IPOH (Dec 25, 2008): By Humayun Kabir

The Perak government is studying the possibility of providing elderly-friendly homes for senior citizens similar to the successful housing venture undertaken by the Singapore government in 1998.

The island republic launched a studio apartment scheme for the elderly as a housing option consisting of customised apartments with elderly-friendly features such as lever taps, non-slip tiles, easy-to-use switches, wider door frames for wheelchair access, level flooring from one floor to another, and handle bars and pull cords linked to an alert system in case of an emergency.

The studio apartments are sold on 30-year leases and built in two sizes of 35sq m and 45sq m.

Perak Education, Local Government, Housing and Public Transport Committee chairman Nga Kor Ming said current housing schemes in Perak were not elderly-friendly, with many incidents of senior citizens injuring themselves at home, for example as a result of slippery floors and uneven flooring, or falling down stairs.

Like Singapore, Perak also wants to get more people to own houses instead of renting.

Singapore, with a land area of 699 sq km, has housed 81% of its 3.6 million population in apartments located in comprehensively planned housing estates.

Of this, 79% own the apartments, with just 2% renting, as at March 2007.

"This is a long-term housing project which ensures that people are stakeholders in our economic building efforts," Nga said.

"We are also studying the possibility of encouraging more tenants to buy up their state rented premises which will make them responsible for the proper maintenance of the buildings."

Perak is expected to help the lower income group own their rented premises through easily obtainable bank loans.

Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin and fifty local govern-ment officials and staff, including Nga and Ipoh Mayor Roshidi Hashim, left for Singapore on Dec 18 for a three-day working visit to study the island republic’s local government system with a view to improving the efficiency of Perak’s local government administration.

The delegation also gained information on how to address squatter problems, maintain heritage and historical buildings, improve and maintain water catchment areas, improve the quality of drinking water and reduce water wastage due to leaks, purify waste water for industrial use, desalinate sea water and clean up rivers to turn them into tourist attractions.

Nizar hits out at defiant PKR reps - NST

IPOH, PERAK, MON: Dec 29, 2008

Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin today hit out at two Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) elected representatives who are going ahead with elections for new village chiefs when the state government had decided that these chiefs would be appointed.

He has demanded a report on the matter immediately from the two, assemblymen Chang Ming Kai (Simpang Pulai) and Member of Parliament Dr Lee Boon Chye (Gopeng).

“I am disappointed with the duo’s action because the prohibition on the elections has been made known. I want to know their justification in carrying on with the elections before action is taken against them,” he told reporters after attending the state-level Ma’al Hijrah celebration, here.

Chan and Dr Lee had gone ahead with the nomination of candidates for the chief of Gunung Rapat New Village here yesterday where five residents aged between 39 and 68 years offered themselves for the post.

The state executive council had decided that new village chiefs would be appointed, and not elected, and that the appointments would be made from next month.

Raja Nazrin to leaders: Stop arguing and help the rakyat - Star

Dec 29, 2008 By CHAN LI LEEN

IPOH: Political leaders should stop their politicking and arguing and instead focus on steering the nation through the economic crisis, said the Regent of Perak Raja Dr Nazrin Shah.

He said leaders should refrain from over-indulging in politics as it was not only unproductive but could sometimes become counter-productive.

“In facing such difficult times, it is compulsory for leaders to place priority on the rakyat (citizens) and to be united in their resolve and understanding in order to overcome challenges.

“This is not the time to find fault, but the time to rectify the situation,” he said during the state-level Maal Hijrah celebration at the State Secretariat here on Monday.

Earlier, Raja Nazrin said the world was experiencing its worst economic crisis in 25 years, adding that not only was the world economy expected to slow down but the Group of Seven countries was anticipating negative growth.

In Malaysia, the electronic and electrical manufacturing sector would see a 14.6% drop in exports to the United States due to the low demand, he said.

The sector, he noted, contributed to 62% of the country’s total exports and 43% of all jobs in the manufacturing sector.

Further noting that demand for prime commodities, especially palm oil, was expected to drop, he expressed worry for the future of school leavers and graduates and those who would lose their jobs.

Raja Nazrin also said the present economic crisis was the combined result of destructive activities carried out over a period of time.

“The grim economic situation is a reminder from God to human beings.

“It is to remind the leaders that no matter how much power has been entrusted to them, they must always remember that their main responsibility is towards humans.

“It is a reminder to leaders who have become power-hungry, greedy and arrogant until the misuse of their power leads to disaster,” he said.

Raja Nazrin further noted that it was vital for the country to create an effective mechanism to monitor any abuse of power.

“Further steps are needed to fulfil expectations by the rakyat for a clean and transparent administration that is supported by a fair judiciary,” he said.

He added that judges of high integrity were needed in order for a fair judiciary system to exist.

“Whatever judicial reforms that are introduced must be translated into action, failing which the rakyat would lose their trust,” he said.

Raja Nazrin to leaders: Stop arguing and help the rakyat - Star

Dec 29, 2008 By CHAN LI LEEN

IPOH: Political leaders should stop their politicking and arguing and instead focus on steering the nation through the economic crisis, said the Regent of Perak Raja Dr Nazrin Shah.

He said leaders should refrain from over-indulging in politics as it was not only unproductive but could sometimes become counter-productive.

“In facing such difficult times, it is compulsory for leaders to place priority on the rakyat (citizens) and to be united in their resolve and understanding in order to overcome challenges.

“This is not the time to find fault, but the time to rectify the situation,” he said during the state-level Maal Hijrah celebration at the State Secretariat here on Monday.

Earlier, Raja Nazrin said the world was experiencing its worst economic crisis in 25 years, adding that not only was the world economy expected to slow down but the Group of Seven countries was anticipating negative growth.

In Malaysia, the electronic and electrical manufacturing sector would see a 14.6% drop in exports to the United States due to the low demand, he said.

The sector, he noted, contributed to 62% of the country’s total exports and 43% of all jobs in the manufacturing sector.

Further noting that demand for prime commodities, especially palm oil, was expected to drop, he expressed worry for the future of school leavers and graduates and those who would lose their jobs.

Raja Nazrin also said the present economic crisis was the combined result of destructive activities carried out over a period of time.

“The grim economic situation is a reminder from God to human beings.

“It is to remind the leaders that no matter how much power has been entrusted to them, they must always remember that their main responsibility is towards humans.

“It is a reminder to leaders who have become power-hungry, greedy and arrogant until the misuse of their power leads to disaster,” he said.

Raja Nazrin further noted that it was vital for the country to create an effective mechanism to monitor any abuse of power.

“Further steps are needed to fulfil expectations by the rakyat for a clean and transparent administration that is supported by a fair judiciary,” he said.

He added that judges of high integrity were needed in order for a fair judiciary system to exist.

“Whatever judicial reforms that are introduced must be translated into action, failing which the rakyat would lose their trust,” he said.

Pakatan offering van services for emergencies - Star

Dec 29, 2008

THE Perak Pakatan Rakyat government is providing van services for those who need transport during emergencies or other urgent situations.

State PAS deputy commissioner Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said the service, which was made available early this month, was aimed at easing the burden of those who did not have transport.

Stressing that this was not a state initiative, Nizar, who is also Perak Mentri Besar, said all the people could do was to contact the respective Pakatan service centres in their areas and pay for the cost of the fuel.

“We started the service this month in Manjung and Kampar, with other districts in Perak to follow suit.

“The van service is available to everyone who needs it in the middle of the night during emergencies, or if they need to send their children to attend courses in other districts.

“The service is provided to all regardless if they are Umno supporters or from the Chinese or the Indian community,” he added.

Nizar said this in his speech after welcoming the PAS Kepala Batas division delegates to his official residence in Ipoh recently.

He said the van service was one method which delegates could use to sway Umno supporters to support Pakatan parties.

On another note, Nizar again extended his invitation for Perak Umno leaders to join Pakatan if they were frustrated with the party because of “internal turmoil”.

“The party is so problematic. Why not come over (to Pakatan) and work together to make Perak a nice place to stay?

“After all, we are not working for our own interests. We are working for the people,” he added.

Nizar also extended his condolences on behalf of the state government to the royal family of Negri Sembilan following the death of Yang diPertuan Besar and the nation’s 10th Yang DiPertuan Agong Tuanku Ja’afar Tuanku Abdul Rahman.

MB: We’ll protect mangrove forests - Star

Dec 29, 2008 By CHRISTINA KOH

Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin (centre) receiving his Honourary Fellowship Award from Institution of Engineers Malaysia president Datuk Paduka Keizrul Abdullah. With them is IEM Perak branch chairman Angus Ang (left).

THE Perak Government will not legalise any prawn farm found to be endangering fragile coastlines and mangrove areas, said Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Moham-mad Nizar Jamaluddin.

He said the state was currently only asking some 5,000 prawn breeders in the state to provide feedback on the status of their farms before evaluating whether it would legalise the industry.

“We are not legalising it (the industry) now,” he told reporters after receiving an Honorary Fellowship Award from the Institution of Engineers Malaysia (IEM) in Ipoh recently.

“If it is proven that the farms are endangering the shoreline and species, we will not give approval. We will suggest another place for them.” he said after Sahabat Alam Malaysia president S.M. Mohamed Idris expressed shock that the Pakatan Rakyat government wanted to legalise the estimated 3,000 illegal prawn ponds in Manjung’s mangrove forests.

The environment group had described it as “akin to rewarding the law breakers” and encouraging other states to follow suit.

Last month, state executive councillor Nga Kor Ming had said the government was considering a new policy to legalise the industry to protect the farmers’ interests and check excessive encroachment into mangrove swamps.

Nizar said the state would give consideration to those prawn farmers whose farms were located on state land but not slated for future projects, while alternative land would be offered to the rest.

On another matter, he said the state was preparing a working paper to include all district engineers as members of their district action committees.

He said having the input of engineers earlier in the planning stage would help prevent future disasters like the Highland Towers and Bukit Antarabangsa tragedies.

Nizar, an engineer by profession, said engineers were often sidelined and tended to only be called when there was a problem.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Perak MB on HIV: That’s not what I meant - Star

Perak MB on HIV: That’s not what I meant

IPOH: Dec 27, 2008

The Perak government is not against couples marrying if any of them were HIV-positive, said Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin.

Clarifying his statement last Sunday, Nizar said he had no doubt that any of the reported 71,000 healthy people diagnosed with HIV could lead normal lives.

However, he said he had been referring to singles when he remarked that couples should not marry if at least one of them were HIV-positive.

“It’s good for them (singles who had yet to marry) to first undergo special treatment which is available now, and only then they can marry once confirmed by a specialist.

“If not, it would be unfair for the other spouse if he or she does not know the other partner has HIV,” he told reporters after receiving an Honorary Fellowship Award from the Institution of Engineers Malaysia here on Saturday.

“That is unfair. If you have a son or daughter, you would not like them to marry someone and suddenly find this out,” Nizar added.

“You would not like your daughter to marry with someone who is HIV-positive, would you? Until he or she is being treated and the doctor confirms that they can marry,” he said.

“Once the doctor says they are out of danger and can have a peaceful family, by all means, go ahead,” Nizar said after various non-governmental organisations had criticised his remarks that suggested that those infected with HIV should not marry as it would be unfair to the spouse or their children.

The groups also took issue with his suggestion that there should be a “quarantine” of such patients.

In reply, Nizar said his definition of quarantine was patients with HIV undergoing treatment at special wards with specialised care and diet, such as at hospitals in Western countries like Australia.

“It’s not that we want to isolate them from society,” he added.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Perak: National disaster act can be misused - Sun

IPOH (Dec 21, 2008): by Humayun Kabir

The Perak government is against the proposal to introduce a National Disaster Emergency Act which is seen as an act by the federal government to take control of Pakatan Rakyat-led state governments by declaring political motivated emergencies in these states.

“The Pakatan Rakyat state government can cooperate with the federal government in case of natural disasters occurring in the state without the need for such an act,” Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin told reporters today.

“I believe the state is capable of managing such catastrophes by cooperating with the relevant authorities in charge of natural disasters without the need for such an act which can be misused by the federal government to take control of Pakatan Rakyat-led states,” he said after officiating the state mosque officers association’s 12th annual general meeting here.

There are adequate federal laws in the country to control such disasters, he said in response to Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz’s statement that the federal government may consider such an act in order for federal agencies to coordinate natural disasters that occur in Pakatan Rakyat-led states.

The minister was reported as saying that with such an act, an emergency can be declared when there is a disaster so that federal government can take charge.

Nazri, who is a member of the National Disaster Relief Committee, had said the act will also curb hoarding of essential supplies and control traders in the distribution of such supplies.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Perak MB: Keep airport promise - NST

IPOH: Dec 22, 2008

The Perak government is disputing Transport Minister Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat's statement that there is no room to extend the runway of the airport here.
Ong, on Friday, had brought up the issue of space when speaking about the topography of the place and the requirements of the International Civil Aviation Organisation.

Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said yesterday studies conducted by the state showed that there was space to accommodate the extension of the runway at Sultan Azlan Shah Airport, which is also known as the Ipoh airport.

"There is space for the extension. So, we would like, once again, to request Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to honour his promise to pump in RM70 million to upgrade Ipoh airport."

Abdullah had promised to upgrade the airport, including extending its runway, when he attended the 100th anniversary celebration of the Perak Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry last year.
Nizar said the runway could be extended by 400m to enable larger Airbus and Boeing planes, such as the 747, to land. However, houses nearby would have to make way for the extension.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Muslims with HIV should not marry: Perak MB - Star


IPOH: Muslim couples should not marry if one or both of them are confirmed to be HIV-positive, said Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin.

He said it would be “grossly unfair” to the couple and to any child they have if they were to tie the knot.

“I believe that if you are a confirmed carrier, there needs to be a quarantine” and he or she should undergo all possible treatment, he told reporters after meeting mosque officials here on Sunday.

“Only then one would review whether he or she can get married. I think it is a gross error to allow somebody very sick like that, an HIV carrier, to marry.

“It would be even worse if both are HIV-positive. You would be passing the disease to the embryo, it’s unjust,” he said.

Nizar said that persons with HIV would find it difficult to lead a normal life because they would be beset by psychological and emotional problems.

Last Thursday, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced that from next year onwards, Muslims planning to marry would have to undergo mandatory HIV screening.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

'No room for Sultan Azlan Shah Airport extension' - NST

Dec 20 - By : P. Chandra Sagaran

IPOH: Transport Minister Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat has rebutted allegations by Perak Pakatan Rakyat assemblymen that financial constraint was one of the reasons the Sultan Azlan Shah Airport here has yet to be upgraded.
"It is not due to finance or lack of commitment but rather the topography. As responsible politicians they should know the scenario better.

"The airport is surrounded by mountains at one end and adjacent to densely-populated areas," he said after witnessing the swearing-in of Ipoh Timur MCA division office bearers on Thursday.

Also present was Perak MCA chairman Datuk Kong Cho Ha.

"When we talk about extension, then the question of space is raised. Economic returns with the upgrading of the airport can only be achieved with sufficient flights, passengers and cargo volume," Ong said.
He said these problems must be first studied and addressed.

There must also be land available for extension while meeting the requirements of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

"It is not just saying we have the land and money but whether the airport has complied with the ICAO requirements which, among others things, would include the length of the runway."

Recently, state Public Transport Committee chairman Nga Kor Ming had asked the Transport Ministry to honour its promise to develop the under-utilised airport, failing which the task should be handed over to the state.

Wall of racial harmony - Star


A WALL displaying Taman Cempaka’s name in four languages at the neighbourhood’s entrance in Ipoh should not be turned into a controversy, said Canning assemblyman Wong Kah Woh.

He said the move reflected Malaysia’s unique multicultural society which should be the basis of the country’s unity.

He said the wall had to be refurbished to replace the ageing letters for Taman Cempaka, some of which had deteriorated and dropped off over the last 30 years.

“I don’t think it should create any controversy unless a certain political party takes up the issue to gain political mileage,” Wong added.

Melting pot of cultures:Wong(pointing)and residents showing the multilingual sign on the wall at the entrance of Taman Cempaka.

Last week, Ipoh Timur Umno division chief Datuk Azian Osman reportedly criticised the move, saying that it went against the Federal Constitu- tion which stated that Bahasa Malaysia was the national language.

Azian had also said the multilingual sign was unnecessary as Taman Cempaka was not a tourist area.

Countering this, Wong said: “Bahasa Malaysia is our national language, this we have never doubted.”

The funds for the multilingual sign, he said, came from his assemblyman’s allocation.

To a question, Wong said he had no plans to propose that multilingual signs be used in other parts of Perak, nor does he have plans to put any more multilingual signs at other residential areas in his constituency.

“This (multilingual signs) is not something new. In Bandar Seri Botani and Taman Anda, for instance, there are signboards in two languages put up by the developer,” he pointed out.

Ipoh Timur Pas Youth chief Salman Saleh, who was also present, praised the move as it would help cultivate harmony among the various communities in the area.

“Putting up multilingual signs should also help redeem the status of Jawi writing that has been sidelined since 1963.

“Little by little, it will let the people realise the role of Jawi writing in Malay culture and religion,” he said.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

MB: Gazetting of park mulled - Star

Dec 17, 2008 By CHAN LI LEEN

THE Perak Government will look into a request to gazette Taman Tasik Temoh as a recreational park, Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said.

He said the state government was more than willing to expedite the move to retain the 48.6ha area near Tapah for use by the public.

“It is the right of the rakyat to enjoy all that this place has to offer,” he said after flagging off the Tapah Endurance Motocross & Cubcross Challenge 2008 on Saturday.

“Furthermore, the Pakatan Rakyat government is very cautious when it comes to approving housing and development projects as it is the rakyat who will suffer whenever floods or landslides occur,” he added.

Nizar (foreground, right) shaking hands with the participants before flagging off the motor race.

Nizar was responding to a request by Batang Padang district officer Datuk Md Damiri Md Sairi to gazette the area.

The area, Md Damiri said, was ideal as a recreational park with its vast greenery, open spaces and ponds.

“The people of Batang Padang and Temoh want this place to be retained for their recreation and ensure it does not fall victim to development.

“And since it is located next to a hill slope, we are afraid it might suffer the same fate as Bukit Antarabangsa should development be carried out,” said Md Damiri.

He added that events such as canoeing and boating competitions had been held there previously.

Organised by Le Shuttle Event (M) Sdn Bhd, the challenge was the first of its kind to be held in the district.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Study loan defaulters owe Perak RM19m - Star

Dec 3, 2008 By SYLVIA LOOI

IPOH: There more than 2,000 Perak government study loan defaulters, some stretching back to the loan’s inception in 1973, owe the state about RM19mil.

“Efforts had been made to get the defaulters to pay up, but they have chosen to ignore the notices of demand,” Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin told reporters after presenting loans totalling RM2.5mil to 136 students at the State Secretariat here on Wednesday.

They should approach the state if they have problems settling the loan, he said, noting that the terms of payment were flexible and no interest was charged.

“As they refused to pay up, the state had to turn away 20 loan applicants wanting to take up post-graduate studies,” he said.

He said the state had since 2006 sent out legal notices to 2,372 study loan defaulters.

“Some of them paid up immediately on receiving the notices, but the majority did not,” he said, adding that the defaulters were businessmen or those holding high positions in companies.

Since the inception of the loan, the state had disbursed RM54mil loans to 5,243 students.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Heed the warning - Star


PERAK local councillors who misuse their positions for personal interest or are found guilty of criminal activities will be booted out immediately, Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said.

“Do not force me to show you the door. We will not tolerate councillors who smear the state’s good name,” he said when opening a training seminar for the state’s 338 local councillors here on Wednesday.

“There is no room for councillors who use the councils for their vested interest,” he added.

Reminding the councillors of their responsibilities to the people, Nizar said they were chosen because the state believed they could deliver.

Later during a press conference, state Education, Local Government, Housing and Public Transport Committee chairman Nga Kor Ming said a Gerik district councillor was under police investigation pertaining to his business enterprise but this was unrelated to the council.

“While the state will not compromise for any misbehaviour and abuse of power, the councillor is innocent until proven guilty,” he said, adding that the councillor would remain in the post pending the outcome of investigation.

He added that the performance of all appointed councillors was being evaluated.

“If they do not perform up to par, it is sayonara to them,” he said.

He added that if the state’s financial standing allowed it, the councillors’ allowance would be increased.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Councillors’ contact numbers to be put up - Star

Oct 13, 2008

THE Tapah District Council will put up the contact numbers of its council officers and councillors at government offices and public places in two weeks’ time.

Sungkai assemblyman A. Sivanesan said the district council was the first local authority in Perak to make public the contact numbers. He noted that 1,000 posters had been printed for the purpose.

“It will allow the people to easily get in touch with the officers and councillors to complain about matters such as uncut grass and uncollected rubbish,” he told reporters in Ipoh on Friday.

He said the Pakatan Rakyat state government had revamped the local authorities with 30% of councillors from non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

“Although the councillors have been sworn in, the people still don’t know who the councillors are and the areas under their jurisdiction,” he added.

Sivanesan said that the people could contact the councillors any time.

”If the people’s complaints are not attended to by the councillors, they can complain to the council officers or me,” added Sivanesan who is also Perak’s Health, Environment and Human Resource Committee chairman

15 councils to cover whole state - Star

Oct 13, 2008 By SYLVIA LOOI

THE whole of Perak will be put under the administration of 15 local councils.

State Education, Local Government, Housing and Public Transport Committee chairman Nga Kor Ming said previously, the 15 councils were administering only 15% of the state’s 21,005 sq km area.

Nga: Previously, 85% of Perak was unattended, leading to problems “That left 85% of the area unattended, leading to problems such as lack of basic services like the cleaning of drains, rubbish collection and grass cutting,” he said recently.

The move to gazette the entire state under the local authorities, Nga added, would ensure the people of Perak received the much-needed services.

Perak, he added, was the fourth state to do so after Kedah, Penang and Malacca.

Nga said the move would also increase the council revenues.

“It will also be helpful in promoting the local councils from municipality to city council status or from district to municipality status,” he added.

Nga added the move was approved by the state executive council (exco) meeting held recently and would be submitted to the Cabinet for approval soon.

Previously, villages which do not come under the local authorities maintain the cleanliness of the villages themselves.

On another matter, Nga said the state had recently approved a 0.7ha plot of land to SJK (C) Eok Kwan in Pengkalan Hulu.

The school, said Nga, had been applying for land since 1966 but there had been no news.

He noted that the school had 267 pupils.

Nga also told temple committees to respect social norms when organising shows in conjunction with religious festivals.

Citing the recent Nine Emperor God festival recently, Nga said his Pantai Remis service centre had received five complaints against performers who dressed sexily and spoke provocatively.

”We will not hesitate to act against the temple committee if they allow the performers to continue with such antics,” he added.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Perak govt offers 80% discount for freehold titles - Star

IPOH: Oct 9, 2008 By CLARA CHOOI

The Perak government has announced an 80% discount on land premium for those keen to convert their leasehold titles to freehold titles in all planned and new villages in the state.

In making the much-awaited announcement Thursday, senior state exco Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham said this meant that applicants only needed to pay 20% of the appreciated value of the land.

“We have finally developed the formula for the premium after the Valuation Department completed its assessment of the appreciated land value after it is converted from leasehold to freehold.

”The appreciated value was estimated based on the size and location of the land and it differs according to the remaining number of years on the land lease for each piece of land,” he said in a press conference at the State Secretariat here.

Ngeh added that the formula was for all 110,000 applicable titles in the state’s planned and new villages, which totalled to an appreciation value of RM1.5bil.

This meant that the people would only pay 20% of the RM1.5bil for the premium, amounting to RM300mil, he said.

”Of course, this is an option and is not compulsory. If there are those who feel they cannot afford to make the conversion now, they do not need to do so.

”However, we are sure that many people would not want to pass up this opportunity, which ultimately empowers them.

”At least by holding freehold titles, it would be easier for them to take bank loans to improve their homes,” he said.

Ngeh added that those interested in making the conversion could do so in two weeks time as the formula schedule has to be disseminated to all district land and mines offices statewide.

”Once they apply, it should take between one and two weeks for the freehold titles to be issued,” he said.

Ngeh added that those who paid for the extension of their land leases after the March 8 elections at a scale higher than the new formula stipulated would automatically be qualified to receive freehold titles without being charged further premium.

Citing an example of Kampung Baru Simee here, Ngeh said that if a 300sq metre piece of land still had a remaining land lease of more than 90 years, an applicant needed only to pay RM780 for the premium.

This amount, he said, was 20% of the appreciated value of the said land, which was RM3,900.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Giving an ear to orang asli - Star

Oct 6, 2008 By CHRISTINA KOH

THE orang asli of Perak are being given a chance to voice their views on projects affecting them.

The Perak government has invited several orang asli organisations to an inaugural meeting in Bidor to discuss projects and events affecting their land.

Senior executive councillor Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham will chair the meeting at the State Secretariat tomorrow which will also involve heads of key departments such as forestry and environment.

Perak Network of Orang Asli Villages founder-adviser and secretary Tijah Yok Chopil hailed the move as a good sign for the community.

”We’re excited. This is the first time that we can sit at the discussion table and be part of the decision making process. This has never happened before.

“Of course we expect hurdles while we seek to defend our rights. But this is better than being left out,” she said.

State executive councillor A. Sivanesan said among the agenda was a proposal for a cluster oil palm farming scheme for the 3ha of land to be set aside for each orang asli family.

“They could earn RM3,000 from each harvest and we don’t want a third party to come in and suck their blood. The programme will go on if the orang asli are willing to venture into it.

“The decision is theirs. The ball is in their court,” he told reporters yesterday after meeting the orang asli at Kampung Chang Sungai Gepai in Bidor, about 70km from Ipoh.

Sivanesan added that the meeting was to address the main complaint of the orang asli that they were never consulted about up-coming projects.

However, Sivanesan hoped there would not be a repeat of the incident when some 100 orang asli staged a walkout out of frustration during a dialogue to thrash out problems about logging in Gopeng.

“The state government will always be ready to hear your problems. The doors of our offices, even the Mentri Besar’s, are always open to you,” he told them.

On a related matter, Sivanesan said the state had recently rejected a proposal by a company to extract mineral water on the 196ha site in Bidor previously earmarked for the National Arboretum project.

He said the company had made the application after the Fede- ral Government had scrapped the project due to financial constraints.

”But we strongly opposed the idea and the orang asli’s land will remain untouched,” he assu-red.

Last year, the botanical garden project caused a storm of pro-tests from orang asli who claimed that it would encroach into their land.

Open tender land sale in Perak - Star

IPOH: Oct 6, 2008

The first sale of state land to private individuals or companies through open tender will be made by the end of the year.

State Education, Local Govern-ment, Housing and Public Transport Committee chairman Nga Kor Ming said the government had identified more than 10 parcels of prime land in the Kinta Valley and Tronoh for sale.

“We expect the first batch of more than 10 parcels of prime land to be tendered out by year-end,” he said after the open house celebration of Seri Bahagia Old Folks Welfare Association in Jalan Gopeng here yesterday.

He said the size of the land identified for the sale would be different for each parcel, with the biggest being 8ha. A land survey would be conducted before the Valuation Department decides on the reserve price.

Nga said those interested in taking part in the open tenders should look out for the advertisements, adding that they would be in four languages.

The tender documents would be made available at the state Land and Mines Office after the advertisements appear in the newspapers.

In August, Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin announced that the state would sell state land by open tender to enhance transparency in its administration and to increase revenue.

On the premium to be imposed for new villagers who are keen to apply for freehold titles, Nga said the state had approved the formula for the calculation of the premium.

He said Nizar and (senior state executive councillor Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham) would make the announcement.

The issue of premium is the hurdle that the government has to clear before it can award freehold titles to the state’s 134 new villages and kampung tersusun (planned villages).

Perak government wants ISA camp moved out of Kamunting - Star

BIDOR: Oct 6, 2008

The Perak government wants the ISA detention camp, now in Kamunting, out of the state.

State executive councillor A. Sivanesan said he would look into the legal avenues and land legislation, in particular the Land Acquisition Act, to see how the Pakatan Rakyat-led state could reclaim the land alienated to the Federal Government for the camp.

Sivanesan suggested the detention centre be relocated to a Barisan Nasional stronghold such as Pahang or Johor.

“Pakatan is against the Internal Security Act (ISA) and the camp is in Kamunting, Taiping. If they (Barisan) are not going to abolish the ISA, then move the camp out and give us back the land,” he said yesterday after meeting orang asli at Kampung Chang Sungai Gepai, about 70km from Ipoh.

However, Sivanesan said he had yet to bring up the idea at the weekly state executive council meeting.

Big trouble in Little India: MIC vs Pakatan - Star


The city’s “Little India” is shaping out to be the scene of a battle for two political parties fighting for the right to hold their own grand Deepavali celebration.

One group is led by Perak executive councillor A. Sivanesan from Pakatan Rakyat, who is crossing swords with an equally determined Perak MIC chairman Datuk G. Rajoo over the matter.

Sivanesan, who is also state Health, Environment and Human Resource Committee chairman, said the state government had as of Monday rejected Rajoo’s application to hold the celebration at Little India.

Sivanesan said this was because Pakatan planned to have its own festival there with the feedback and participation of local hawkers, businessmen and organisations.

“In the past, Ipoh Barat MIC has never involved the public when the party organises the celebration. We’ve received complaints from the traders of Little India,” he claimed.

“This time however, the community will themselves decide with Pakatan how the celebration should be done,” he told reporters at the State Secretariat here on Monday.

Sivanesan also accused the MIC of having previous Deepavali celebrations to profit from the festival, such as through the sale of trading lots.

“But we (Pakatan) are not doing it to make money. As a veteran politician, Rajoo should understand that the final decision is in the hands of the state executive council,” he said.

“The council officers are mere civil servants who should take instruction from the state and perform accordingly,” he added.

A defiant Rajoo said Ipoh Barat MIC would carry on preparations for the Deepavali celebration, which it had been doing for the past 16 years.

Rajoo said the party had already received approval in May from the Ipoh City Council to have the week-long celebration in Little India.

“We paid RM2,600 (for the security deposit) and we were issued an official receipt. We’ve even received payment for 83 stalls from traders.

“Now all of a sudden, Sivanesan wants to have the celebration in the same place which is very unfair. We are not doing this illegally,” he said.

Rajoo argued that the council was an independent body and that Sivanesan should not have meddled in a lawfully approved event.

He also denied that the MIC never involved the public or held such events to make profit, adding that the party even subsidised the celebration so that the Indian traders and community could benefit.

“We are not money-minded. We are a non-profit body. We are running the celebration for the people,” he retorted.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

More Pakatan service centres - NST

IPOH: Sept 30, 2008

The Pakatan Rakyat state government will set up community service centres at all 28 state constituencies held by Barisan Nasional to complement the 31 they have set up in seats held by PR. "It is our aim to provide services to all the rakyat, irrespective of whether they are in BN constituencies or PR-held seats," state Education, Local Government, Housing and Public Transport Committee chairman Nga Kor Ming said. The new centres are to begin operations by the year-end.

Ragu still hoping to get MyKad soon - NST

R.Ragu showing the temporary ID he received

IPOH: The words that came out of 33-year-old R. Ragu sounded like they were plucked out of Martin Luther King Jr's famous speech, I Have A Dream.
"I have a dream that my four children will one day live in this country as respected citizens.

"That they will be called Malaysians, and that they will not be made stateless like their father," said Ragu at the National Registration Department (NRD), here, yesterday.

Speaking to the New Straits Times after obtaining his new temporary identification document, the father of three, who is expecting his fourth child soon, said he hoped his children would not suffer the same fate because of his stateless status.

His eldest daughter is now 9 and Ragu is worried that she would not be given a MyKad when she turns 12.
"If I, her father, had no MyKad and am not accepted as a citizen of this country, will the National Registration Department accept my eldest daughter as a citizen?

"Will my two younger daughters get to live as Malaysians? Will my unborn fourth suffer the same fate?"

Ragu also wondered if his fate would change after he got his temporary ID.

He said that the solution to his problem would be getting his MyKad.

"Many years ago, I held a similar temporary ID but I struggled to get work because companies, factories and enterprises asked me to produce my MyKad.

"Will things really change now for me and my family? No, not even a little, I believe.

"What is the use of re-issuing a temporary ID? I can't open a bank account, buy a prepaid mobile phone card, own a car or have anything to my name.

"My situation is worse than a bankrupt."

Ragu, who was abandoned by his parents when he was 4, only has an incomplete birth certificate issued in 1998 indicating that he was born in Bagan Serai, near Taiping, to one Rajamani.

Because the certificate has no other details about his parents, the NRD only issued a temporary ID which was valid until 2004 when the Home Ministry decided to stop issuing them.

His eight attempts to apply for a MyKad since 1998 failed because he cannot prove that he was born here.

In his last attempt, in July, he was allegedly told to meet Sultan of Perak Sultan Azlan Shah to get the ruler's letter to support his MyKad application.

His plight was highlighted by the NST last Thursday, when he was unable to meet Sultan Azlan Shah. However, the ruler, on learning of Ragu's plight, instructed the NRD last Friday to issue a new temporary ID immediately, pending his application for a MyKad.

Ragu arrived in Ipoh with his wife G. Neelaawathi, 27, and their three children and they have been sleeping in their car since last Tuesday.

Despite his stateless predicament, Ragu is grateful that there were people who helped him.

"Although what I got was not what I had wished for, I am still very grateful to Sultan Azlan Shah, the New Straits Times, state exco member A. Sivanesan and Kuala Kangsar municipal councillor S. Thiagarajan who have helped me in their own way.

"I hope the government will give me MyKad before my eldest daughter turns 12," he said, adding that the temporary ID expires in September 2010.

Illicit sex councillor quits - Star

IPOH: Sept 30, 2008 By HAH FOONG LIAN

Perak Tengah councillor Zul Hassan (pic), who admitted to having illicit sex with a Chinese national, has vacated his post.

State Education, Local Government, Housing and Public Transport Committee chairman Nga Kor Ming said the move in asking Zul to resign was to defend the integrity of the state government and to protect the interests of the people.

“We have found him to be unsuitable to hold the post of a councillor,” Nga told reporters here yesterday.

Nga pointed out that under the Local Government Act, the appointment and dismissal of a councillor was the state government’s prerogative.

“If we ask him to resign, the message is very clear,” he said, adding: “He will be replaced once we have identified a suitable candidate.”

Zul, who had been charged with corruption, had lodged a complaint with the state Religious Department and had admitted to having illicit sex with a woman.

Zul had also accused Mohamad Imran of being the person responsible in organising and promoting the sinful act by providing the woman to him and two others at the Kuala Kangsar rest area on Aug 14.

Mohamad Imran is the complainant in the corruption case which Zul and four other accused had claimed trial to.

As for the two state executive councillors who were also charged with corruption, Nga said: “As far as they are concerned, they are innocent and they have reasons to believe they have been framed.”

“If they were framed, then there is no reason for us to punish the innocent,” Nga added.

He also urged the rest of the 338 councillors in Perak to protect their good name, and that of their family and the state government.

Declaring that he had full confidence in them as they were selected through a transparent and democratic process, Nga said the interests of the people should be their commitment.

Meanwhile, PKR president Datuk Seri Wan Azizah Wan Ismail welcomed and fully supported the state’s decision to sack Zul.

She said Zul would also be hauled up by PKR’s disciplinary committee and asked to explain the remark, when he made a comparison of his inability to resist temptation to someone who is being offered sedekah (charity).

Monday, September 29, 2008

Councillor who took sexual favours sacked - Star

IPOH: Sept 29, 2008

The state government has declared as vacant the post of Perak Tengah district councillor, held by Zul Hassan who is facing a corruption charge and admitted to having accepted sexual favours.

The move which was quickly hailed by Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR).

“Zul Hassan, who is under investigation by the Anti-Corruption Authority (ACA), had not only issued a statement confessing to illicit sex, but also justified his decision by saying he was induced into committing thw immoral act,” PKR president Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail said in a statement.

“Such a statement makes a mockery of Pakatan Rakyat’s pledge towards a government that respects the trust of the people,” she said.

Zul Hassan is facing a corruption charge over a development project at Seri Iskandar in Perak Tengah. In a complaint that he lodged against one Mohamad Imran Abdullah, he and businessman Fairul Azrim Ismail admitted having accepted offers to have sex with Chinese nationals.

Mohamad Imran is the complainant in a corruption case in which Zul and four others are the accused.

Zul Hassan had been quoted as saying “what is important is we did not ask for the women. He supplied them to us. If people sedekah (donate), don’t you want to accept it?”

Dr Wan Azizah said the PKR disciplinary committee will deal with Zul Hassan, who will be asked to explain his statement above.

Firm to collect garbage during Raya - Star

Sept 29, 2008

THE Ipoh City Council has contracted Syarikat Lee Tuck Construction to collect household refuse during the Hari Raya celebrations.

In a statement released yesterday, it said the company would be carrying out the service from Sept 30 to Oct 11.

The areas that the company will be servi-cing on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays are from Fair Park to Taman Pearl, Star Park and Taman Mirindy; Canning Garden; Buntong Jaya, Taman Tinggi, Silibin Ria, Maju Ria, Buluh Mas, Ulu Buntong and its surroundings; Tawas Mewah, Kledang Prima, Tawas Sinaran, Anjung Tawas, Tawas Idaman and parts of Klebang Jaya; Tanjung Rambutan town, Taman Chong Kee, Berjaya, Jothy, Nesa, Kinta Jaya and Taman Indah.

The areas that the company will be collecting refuse on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays are Kampung Simee and Taman Wah Keong; Ipoh Garden; First Garden and Taman Rishah; Klebang Restu, Klebang Ria and parts of Klebang Jaya; North Ward, South Ward, Tanjung town, Kampung Tersusu Batu Lapan, RPT Ulu Kinta, Taman Tanjung and Taman Bahagia.

Director forks out RM1,800 for a pomelo - Star

IPOH: Sept 29, 2008

How much would you pay for a pomelo?

Company director Cheong Kong Fitt, 48, was willing to part with a whopping RM1,800 for just one fruit when it was auctioned off for charity during the Perak DAP fund-raising dinner here on Saturday.

Asked why he was willing to spend so much, Cheong simply said: “It’s for charity and the money will go to a good cause.”

He declined to comment further.

Charity auction: Participants checking the pomelos to be auctioned during the Perak DAP fund-raising dinner in Ipoh on Saturday night.

The man who shied away from media attention triggered a round of wild applause when he emerged the highest bidder during the auction.

He was also thanked profusely by state DAP leaders, including Perak party chief Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham and state exco member A. Sivanesan.

The dinner, held to raise funds for the party to conduct its charitable works, was attended by more than 5,000 people at Dataran DBI.

During his speech earlier, Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin announced that the state government would be naming a street in the city’s Little India area after former Perak DAP chairman, the late P. Patto.

“We want him to be remembered always as the true person who had fought for the rights of the Indians.

“We want people to remember him for his convictions,” he said.

Patto, a former teacher, was at one time DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang’s political secretary and stood against MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu for the Sungai Siput parliamentary seat during the 1974 and 1990 general elections.

He died in 1995 from heart complications.

MB tells councillor in sex case to quit - Star

IPOH: Sept 29, 2008

Perak Tengah district councillor Zul Hassan, who had recently admitted accepting sexual bribes, has been ordered by the state government to quit his post.

Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said the Pakatan Rakyat government had conveyed the directive to the councillor on Friday.

”This is because he is unfit to represent the Government in the council and we have told him to quit as soon as possible,” he said after breaking fast at the Perak Indian Muslim Mosque here yesterday.

Nizar added that Zul’s case would serve as a warning to all councillors not to engage in any indecent or corrupt practices in their line of duty.

”The moment they do anything that opposes the Pakatan’s customs of decency and code of ethics, they will no longer be fit to represent us in any post.

”We will not tolerate this,” he said.

Nizar also recommended to the Anti-Corruption Agency to look into the report that Zul and businessman Fairul Azrim Ismail had filed with the Perak Religious Department against their alleged inducer, Mohammad Imran Abdullah.

”The agency should take action against both parties: those who received bribes as well as those who offered the bribes.

“In any case of bribery, this is the way it should be done,” he said.

On Tuesday, Zul and Fairul had filed a report against Mohammad Imran, alleging that the latter had induced them into having illicit sex with Chinese nationals.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Ahli Majlis Bandaraya Ipoh - Part 2

Senarai Ahli Majlis Bandaraya Ipoh:

Zon 8 - Tembok, Taman Cherry, Taman Lim

Nama Penuh : Rajasegaran a/l V. N. Rajah
No. 51 Jalan Lang, Padang Tembak, 30000, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Bekas Presiden Mahkamah Perindustrian Malaysia
No. Tel : 012-4580841
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 9 - Kepayang, Fair Park, Bandar Ipoh Raya

Nama Penuh : Dato' Mohd Ariff b. Shaffie
No. 23-A, Laluan Pinji Seni 4, Taman Pinji, Jalan Azlan Shah Selatan, 31650, Ipoh, Perak
Pekerjaan : Pengarah Syarikat
No. Tel : 012-5102862
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 10 - Kg. Simee, Taman Ipoh, Taman Canning

Nama Penuh : Liu Then Tui
F-8-5, Damaipuri Condominium, Jalan Chin Hwa, Taman Chateau, 30250, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Konsultan
No. Tel :
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 11 - Perpaduan, Ulu Kinta, Tambun

Nama Penuh : Cheah Poh Ting
No. 6, Laluan Tambun Perdana 11, Panorama Taman Perdana, 31400 Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Jurutera Bertauliah
No. Tel : 012-5010130
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 12 - Buntong, Silibin

Nama Penuh : M. Kulasekaran Segaran
No. 118, Jalan Dato' Ahmad Said, 30450, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Peguam/ Ahli Parlimen Ipoh Barat
No. Tel : 012-5034346
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 13 - Greentown, Pekan Lama, Medan Kidd

Nama Penuh : Ding Pooi Kooi
No. 44b & 46b, Medan Istana 1, Bandar Ipoh Raya, 30020, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Arkitek
No. Tel : 012-5225727 / 05-2417949
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 14 - Cempaka, Taman Golf, Lumba Kuda

Nama Penuh : Yip Mun Chien
No. 76 Persiaran Chempaka Sari 24, Taman Chempaka, 31400, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Penasihat Kewangan
No. Tel : 012-5173361
Emel / Aduan :

Ahli Majlis Bandaraya Ipoh

Senarai Ahli Majlis Bandaraya Ipoh:

Zon 1 - Khantan, Chemor, Klebang

Nama Penuh : Hj. wan Ahmad Tarmizi b. Abdul Azizi
21 Jalan Tanjung, Desa tanjung Murni, 31200 Chemor, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Bekerja Sendiri
No. Tel : 019-5101772
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 2 - Kuala Kuang, Chepor, Meru

Nama Penuh : Ayyathurai a/l Achutharaman
No. 77, Persiaran Tebing Kinta 1, Taman Mirindi, 31400, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Pengarah Syarikat
No. Tel : 013-5211840
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 3 - Tawas, Tasek, Ipoh Grove

Nama Penuh : Dato' Francis Lee
No. 33-c (2nd Floor), Jalan Tun Sambathan, 30000, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Presiden Rehda Perak
No. Tel :
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 4 - Kinding, Tanjung Rambutan, Putra

Nama Penuh : Dr. Ngiam Swee Keat
No. 36, Lebuh Lasam, 30350 Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Bekas Pengarah Kesihatan Bandaraya, MBI
No. Tel : 012-5199472
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 5 - Bercham, Tasek, Dermawan

Nama Penuh : Cheah Pou Hian
No. 18 Persiaran Bercham Utara 6, Taman Ramai, 31400, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Pembantu Khas Ahli Dewan Undangan Negeri Perak
No. Tel : 016-5558766
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 6 - Jelapang, Taman Pertama, Rishah

Nama Penuh : Suresh s/o Hari Krishnan
5, Persiaran Puncak Jelapang 5, Puncak Jelapang Maju, 30020, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Peguam
No. Tel : 012-5885119
Emel / Aduan :

Zon 7 - Gugusan Manjoi

Nama Penuh : Shamsul Kamar b. Ani
No.1112, Jalan Perwira, Kampung Manjoi, 30020, Ipoh, Perak

Pekerjaan : Peniaga
No. Tel : 017-5894485
Emel / Aduan :


Dipetik dari:

IPOH: September 17, 2008 By Anuar

Terminal Bas Sentral Meru Raya bernilai RM32 juta - satu mercutanda baru Bandaraya Ipoh akan terbina dalam tempoh tiga tahun lagi. Ia menawarkan kemudahan pengangkutan awam termoden untuk rakyat Perak,khususnya pengguna di Ipoh.

Satu Majlis Menandatangani Perjanjian Pembinaan Kompleks Terminal Bas Bersepadu Bandaraya Ipoh dan Pusat Perdagangan dan Perniagaan diadakan di Pejabat Menteri Besar baru-baru ini. Ia turut disaksikan EXCO Pendidikan, Kerajaan Tempatan, Perumahan dan Pengangkutan Awam, Nga Kor Ming dan Setiausaha Kerajaan Negeri, Dato Dr Abdul Rahman bin Hashim .

Kompleks yang akan menjadi ‘Hub Pengangkutan’ itu akan dilaksanakan secara ‘Private Funding Initiative’ oleh syarikat The Combined Bus Services Sdn Bhd.

Menteri Besar Dato Seri Ir Haji Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin berkata, projek di kawasan seluasa 8.3 ha ini akan memberikan keselesaan kepada pengguna dan lokasinya yang strategik bersebelahan Lebuhraya Utara-Selatan akan tentunya mengurangkan kesesakan lalulintas di dalam Bandaraya Ipoh.

Beliau berkata syarikat itu juga dikehendaki menyediakan rangkaian perkhidmatan 30 bas baru pada peringkat awalnya bagi menggantikan 250 bas lama secara berperingkat dalam tempoh 3 tahun dari tarikh pelancaran.

Pengusaha juga bukan sahaja akan memberikan perkhidmatan yang selesa, tetapi juga akan memastikan terdapat kemudahan seperti surau untuk pengguna Islam, katanya sambil menegaskan bahawa projek ini membuktikan Kerajaan Negeri Pakatan Rakyat berusaha memberikan perkhidmatan terbaik untuk rakyat. End/anr

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Oil palm plan proposed - Star

Sept 18, 2008 By CHRISTINA KOH

NINE Perak Chinese independent schools have identified a piece of land in Taiping where they plan to grow oil palm to earn income for their expenses.

Revealing this, Perak Education, Local Government, Housing and Public Transport Committee chairman Nga Kor Ming said the state would look into the application by the school boards of governors for the proposed site in Taiping.

He said the school boards had also agreed to set up a non- profit company to manage the land.

“All the nine schools will have equal share and the school boards will not draw any salary or directors’ fees,” he told reporters after a meeting with the school boards in Ipoh on Tuesday.

The nine schools are SM Shen Jai, SM Yuk Choy and SM Poi Lam all three in Ipoh, SM Nam Hwa in Sitiawan, SM Yik Ching in Pantai Remis, SM Pei Yuan in Kampar, SM Hua Lian in Taiping, SM Sam Min in Teluk Intan, and SM Tsung Wah in Kuala Kangsar.

Last month, Mentri Besar Da-tuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin had announced that the state had approved a 1,000ha piece of land for the independent schools.

Nga stressed that the nine schools previously did not receive any government aid and were heavily reliant on public donations.

“With the land, the schools would be able to earn a steady income for their use,” he said.

He noted that besides the in-dependent schools, the Pakatan Rakyat government had also allocated a 2,600ha plot of land in Kuala Kangsar for Kolej Islam Darul Ridzuan.

The state, he said, had also given RM1.3mil to 18 religious schools and land to several Tamil schools.

“This proves that Pakatan emphasises on fair and just treatment for all schools because we believe education is the key factor in nation building,” he said.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Bye-bye bone-shakers Ipoh set to have better bus services, says Perak MB - Star

Sept 16, 2008 By HAH FOONG LIAN

OLD and rickety buses plying the routes in Ipoh will be a thing of the past now that all the city bus operators have teamed up to replace the bone-shakers and improve the public transport system.

Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin said under an agreement to build the Ipoh Central Transportation Hub in Meru Raya with The Combined Bus Services Sdn Bhd, the bus company would supply 250 new air-conditioned coaches, worth some RM150mil, to ply the city routes.

In return, the state government would allocate a 3.4ha plot of land at Meru Raya to The Combined Bus Services to build the RM38mil new bus terminal.

The Combined Bus Services is a consortium that is formed by the city’s 14 bus operators.

Nizar said the 14 bus operators had agreed to work together to improve the public bus transportation system.

“Ipoh dwellers are in dire need of good bus services,” he said after witnessing the signing of a memorandum of understanding between the Perak government and The Combined Bus Services to build the new terminal.

“We would like to see existing bone-shaking buses be replaced and phased out. We want air-conditioned buses with uniformed and well-behaved drivers,” Nizar added.

Nizar pointed out that the first 30 new coaches would hit the city streets here on or before the Chinese New Year.

The consortium, he said, had three years to supply all the 250 new coaches.

On the new bus terminal at Meru Raya, Nizar said the company would be given 30 months to complete the building.

He added that a model of the building would be on display at the lobby of the Ipoh City Council for a month to obtain public feedback.

A contest to name the new public bus transportation would be held and the winner would be given free bus rides for life, he said.

On whether the old bus terminals at Medan Gopeng and Medan Kidd would be moved, Nizar said it would be reviewed at a meeting with the city council but public convenience would be given consideration before the authorities decide on what to do with them.

State Education, Local Government, Housing and Public Transport Committee chairman Nga Kor Ming, who was also present, said the government had saved RM188mil because the consortium was coming out with the money for the new bus terminal and new coaches.

Councils taking over community halls to prevent political misuse - Star


The Perak Government has directed all councils to take over the administration of local community halls to prevent misuse by any political party.

State Education, Local Government, Housing and Public Transport Committee chairman Nga Kor Ming said this was because in the past, the previous administration had “misused” community halls by banning non-Barisan Nasional parties from using them.

“Therefore in order to curb abuse and protect public interest, the state has decided to let the councils and JKKK (Village Security and Development Committee) take over the control and management of these halls.

“All community halls belong to the people and not to any political party,” said Nga in response to Chenderiang assemblyman Dr Mah Hang Soon, who had criticised the Pakatan Rakyat government for taking over a hall in Bukit Pagar, Tapah.

Dr Mah had accused the state of taking over community halls that were built by the previous Barisan administration, which earned him a ticking-off.

“These halls were built by Barisan, but using the people’s funds. Please distinguish the difference,” Nga said.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Ngeh: Posting of 'doctored' photographs politically motivated - Sun

IPOH (Sept 11, 2008): by Humayun Kabir

The posting of doctored obscene photographs of six Perak DAP politicians on the website over the past year is politically motivated to tarnish the image of DAP members and also to ruin their political career, said state party chairman Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham.

"I was the first of the six members to fall victim to such sex slandering and character assassination on the website last year. This was followed by Nga Kor Ming (Taiping MP and Pantai Remis assemblyman)," said Ngeh who is Perak senior exco member, Bruas MP and Sitiawan assemblyman.

"We have lodged police reports on the doctored obscene photographs on the website. The police have promised quick action on the matter but until now there is no further response nor feedback from them on the progress of investigations."

"DAP condemns such dirty and unscrupulous ways to attack party members. It's just plain low-down tactics to put the party in a bad light in the eyes of the public. They cannot attack us politically as the rakyat is happy with our service to the public so they are resorting to such underhand tactics to ruin our political career and tarnish the Perak government," he added.

Ngeh said that the other two DAP victims of doctored obscenity on the website last year were Batu Gajah MP Fong Po Kuan and former Mengelembu assemblyman Keong Meng Sing.

"It is easy for the people to see that the heads of the six DAP leaders were superimposed onto the obsecene photographs," he told theSun, challenging those responsible to be brave and fight in the open politically instead of using unethical means.

Two DAP assemblymen latest victims in alleged sex romps - Star

IPOH: Sept 11, 2008 By HAH FOONG LIAN

Doctored photographs of two Perak DAP assemblymen allegedly performing sex acts are being distributed via e-mail.

Speaking at a press conference Thursday after lodging a police report over the pictures on Wednesday, Tebing Tinggi assemblyman Ong Boon Piow said:

“I was shocked when I opened my e-mail to see a nude photo of myself with a woman.”

Ong said the e-mail he received was dated Sept 9 and was sent to him at 8.23pm by a person named Lee BT.

I believe that the doctored photograph is a dirty tactic used to assassinate my character, he said.

He added that he had given the picture and details of the sender to the police to investigate the matter.

Canning assemblyman Wong Kah Woh, who was also present at the press conference, said doctored photographs and a videoclip showing him in an alleged sex romp with a woman were also being circulated via e-mail.

“I first came to know of the pictures in June but I chose to ignore them,” he said, adding that he did not lodge a police report.

“Whoever the culprit is, he is just insulting the intelligence of the people by doctoring our photographs and circulating them,” he said.

Wong said he believed the photographs of him and Ong were downloaded from a website of a DAP leader, who posted pictures of Perak DAP leaders attending various events here.

Ong and Wong are the latest victims of doctored photographs showing the Perak DAP leaders in alleged sex romps.

In June 2007, doctored photographs of Batu Gajah MP Fong Po Kuan, Beruas MP and Sitiawan assemblyman Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham, Taiping MP and Pantai Remis assemblyman Nga Kor Ming and former Menglembu assemblyman Keong Meng Sing were also circulated via e-mail.

A police report had also been lodged and the Perak DAP had offered RM5,000 to those with information on the culprit who doctored their photographs showing them performing the alleged sex acts.

Nizar gets down to work as Perak FA boss next month - Star

IPOH: Sept 11, 2008

Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mo­hammad Nizar Jamaluddin will assume the post of president of the cash-strapped Perak FA next month.

In making the announcement yesterday, Nizar said that he would begin his duties as president after the association’s annual general meeting in mid-October.

He said at a press conference after chairing the state executive council meeting here yesterday that the FA would also undergo a major restructuring process, including the hiring of new players and trainers.

Nizar added that the state government approved a total of RM300,000 last month to the FA to help them ease their financial burden.

“We are looking into approving a similar amount soon for the same purpose. We are aware of the financial problems faced by the FA and will try to settle them in stages,” he said.

The FA have debts, including defaulted payments on EPF, income taxes and some RM500,000 to the Ipoh City Council for rental of the Perak Stadium.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Instal CCTVs, urges Ipoh OCPD - Star

Sept 9, 2008 By CHRISTINA KOH

THE police have urged Ipoh citizens operating businesses and factories to invest in a CCTV system to help deter crime.

Ipoh OCPD Asst Comm Azisman Alias said the system would help the authorities use the captured footage of the suspects during the incidents as evidence in court.

“Another suggestion is to form volunteer neighbourhood patrols,” he said during a crime prevention dialogue in Pasir Pinji, Ipoh, organised by Perak DAP recently.

ACP Azisman said this in response to concerns raised by residents at the perceived lack of security of their neighbourhood in the Pasir Pinji and Pengkalan areas.

One resident related how he had recently been beaten up and robbed on the street, while another man said a snatch thief targeted his wife just 500m from the Pasir Puteh police station in March this year.

Another woman complained about how two Rottweilers guarding her factory ended up missing the next morning.

Residents also expressed fears of stopping their vehicles at traffic lights early in the morning, as robbers tended to prey on them.

“But if I decide to run the red light to avoid being robbed, police might issue me a summons instead,” said one man.

ACP Azisman urged the public to call the Ipoh district operations centre at 05-2451562 or 2451563 to alert police of any criminal activities in their areas.

“Tell us immediately and we will respond within 10 to 15 minutes,” said ACP Azisman, who also reminded residents to report any suspicious activity such as strangers lingering at late hours.

He explained that currently, the district only had 1,400 police officers, including administrative staff, to cater to a population of some 1.5 million people.

“This ratio is very low and not something that we like. Even so, the crime rate in Ipoh has dropped by 8% compared to last year,” he said.

Pasir Pinji assemblyman and state exco member Thomas Su Keong Siong appealed to residents to join the Rakan Cop programme.

Also present were police officials and Ipoh Timor MP Lim Kit Siang, who registered for the Rakan COP programme.

Drop in dengue cases in Perak - Star

Sept 9, 2008

THERE has been a 28.8% drop in the number of dengue cases in Perak up to Aug 30, state Health, Environment and Human Resource Committee chairman A. Sivanesan said.

“There were 42 cases reported between Aug 24 and Aug 30 compared with the previous week. No deaths were reported.

“The Kinta district reported the highest number of cases with 20 cases, seven in the Manjung district and six in Kuala Kangsar.

“However, the total number of cases for the year to date has increased by 25.2% to 2,520 cases compared with 2,012 cases for the corresponding period last year,” he said recently.

Compounds worth a total of RM7,950 had been issued during that week, he added.

On the chikungunya outbreak, Sivanesan said as at July 29, no new cases had been reported in the Batang Padang district.

“Throughout the state, a total of 335 blood samples were taken and 100 people tested positive.

“Of this number, 95 cases were from Batang Padang, two each from Hulu Perak and Kinta, and one from Kuala Kangsar,” he said.

Revitalise Ipoh airport - Star

Sept 9, 2008 By HAH FOONG LIAN

THE under-utilised Sultan Azlan Shah Airport in Ipoh should be turned into a hub for short-range travel, Datuk Bandar Roshidi Hashim said.

He made the proposal in his speech when he opened the three-day Perak Matta Travel Fair 2008 at Stadium Indera Mulia in Ipoh recently.

Roshidi said: “I am of the view that the airport should be used for short-range travel such as flying to Phuket if the runway could not be extended.”

Promoting tourism: Roshidi (left) being introduced to Perak Matta Fair participants dressed in traditional Chinese and Korean costumes.

He noted that small aircraft could use the airport, which now only serves weekly flights to Medan.

In 2006, low-cost carrier AirAsia stopped flights from Ipoh to Senai, citing the short runway as the reason.

Since then, there have been calls by public interest groups to expand the use of the airport.

Roshidi pointed out that the state government, including the Ipoh City Council, was keen to enhance the use of the airport.

Roshidi noted that tourism was an important economic contributor to the earnings of Ipoh city.

He said that he would be going to Medan, Indonesia, next month to promote Ipoh as a destination although flights from Ipoh to Medan were limited.

“We want to continue to promote Ipoh as an international tourist destination,” he added.

On the travel fair, Roshidi said this year was the sixth Perak Matta Travel Fair to be organised for travellers.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

MB defends land aid - NST

IPOH: Sept 4, 2008

Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin has defended the decision to allocate 1,000ha of land to nine Chinese independent schools, saying the state government has always acted fairly towards everyone in the state, including the Malays.
"The state government is serious about resolving issues faced by various segments in the state for so many years," he said here yesterday.

He was commenting on the reactions of Umno and the party's Youth wing leaders in the state, which criticised him for sidelining the people's religious schools or sekolah agama rakyat (SAR).

Nizar said he believed that Umno leaders who had questioned the state government's decision were not aware that the administration had done a lot for the 18 SAR.

Nizar also took Umno Youth to task for portraying itself as a defender of the religious schools.
"Why is Perak Umno Youth suddenly so interested in fighting for the rights of SAR, when it was the Barisan Nasional government, under the premiership of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, which discontinued financial assistance to the religious schools, causing many of them to shut down?"

Hishammuddin questions Perak's move to allocate land to Chinese schools - NST

PUTRAJAYA, THURS: Sept 4, 2008

Education Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein today questioned the Perak state government's move to allocate 1,000ha of land to nine Chinese independent schools, saying it was politically motivated.

The Umno Youth chief also said Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin should be fair towards other schools in need of similar aid.

Nizar recently said the land was given to show appreciation and support to Chinese independent schools in the state.

He had said the land would enable the schools to generate revenue to pay for their operational expenses.

Hishammuddin said the move was only a populist step by Pakatan Rakyat as it was clearly one-sided and focussed only on one type of school.
"There are so many schools out there in need of land. I challenge the MB to approve immediately land to religious private schools, missionary, Tamil schools and other institutions in the state. It is only fair that these schools are given the same treatment as those given to the nine Chinese private schools."

He said the ministry welcomed any move by individuals or companies to contribute towards the country's education system and schools.

However, assistance given should be done sincerely and not politically motivated without considering the feeling and sensitivity of other parties.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Perak Umno Youth appeals for land for religious schools - Star

IPOH: Sept 1, 2008 By CLARA CHOOI

Perak Umno Youth has urged the state government to allocate land to all Islamic independent schools in the state.

Its chief Zainol Fadzi Paharudin said while the wing respected the state’s decision to give land to all Chinese independent schools, it believed the move should also benefit the Malays.

“We respect the decision and the reason for giving land to the Chinese schools.

“But we would like to appeal to the Mentri Besar to give land to all the state’s Islamic independent schools as well,” he said in a statement Sunday.

Zainol added that all decisions made by the state should defend the rights of the Malays and the bumiputras.

“The wing would like to urge the Mentri Besar to always look after the Malay community in Perak,” he said.

On Friday, Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin announced that the state government had given an approval in principle to allocate 1,000ha of land to the state’s nine Chinese independent schools.

It had been reported that this would allow the schools to form a company that would manage the land so that the revenue could fund the schools’ administration.

Nizar had also said that the allocation was a long-term solution to aid the financially independent schools as the state could only afford to give an annual allocation of RM30,000.

Rebuild Sungai Pari flats - Star

Sept 1, 2008 By CHAN LI LEEN

THE Ipoh City Council is hoping that the Perak Government will agree to its suggestion to demolish and rebuild the problematic Sungai Pari Towers.

Datuk Bandar Roshidi Hashim said the council believed that rebuilding the apartment blocks, one of the oldest in Ipoh, could be the solution to providing a better living environment for its tenants.

“The council will seek the state’s approval and should it agree, we will be happy to come up with the building plans and implement the project,” Roshidi told reporters on Friday after chairing his first full board meeting as mayor.

Built in 1963, the 11 apartment blocks have been a constant source of complaints regarding the shoddy maintenance, vandalism and infestation by drug addicts.

The blocks are owned by the council and each unit is rented out for between RM80 and RM155 per month depending on the size of each unit.

Roshidi said the single-room units were no longer appropriate.

“The two and three-bedroom units are also not suitable for large families and can pose moral and social problems,” he said.

He added that the council could not rent out certain units due to their condition.

Roshidi added that not only were vandals destroying the blocks but that maintenance was very costly.

“It costs the council about RM245 to maintain each unit per month,” he said.

According to Roshidi, there are 288 units of which 201 are occupied.

Ratepayers owe council RM70mil, says mayor - Star

Sept 1, 2008

RATEPAYERS owe the Ipoh City Council RM70.6mil in arrears as of July, new Datuk Bandar Roshidi Hashim said.

He said RM53.1mil of the arrears was in unpaid assessment and 74,305 residential property owners owed the council a whopping RM24mil.

“Apart from home owners, 2,265 factories also owe the council RM3.2mil. From January to July this year, fewer than half of the ratepayers paid RM46.1mil in assessment,” he said after chairing his first council full board meeting after taking office as mayor on July 23.

Ratepayers who failed to settle their dues by yesterday risk getting Form E notices from the council.

“If defaulters still disregard the notices to pay up, then the council has to issue Form F whereby their assets will be confiscated,” he added.

During the debate session, councillor A. Ayyathurai suggested that the council cancelled the contracts of errant con-tractors engaged to cut grass at housing areas.

Roshidi said he would not tolerate contractors or subcontractors who did not accomplish their jobs as promised in their contracts.

Councillor M. Kulasegaran urged the council to encourage the use of solar and renewable energy as a long-term measure towards a cleaner environment.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Potential water supplier - Star

Aug 31, 2008 By CLARA CHOOI

PERAK is looking into supplying water to Selangor and Penang. Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Nizar Jamaluddin said the Perak Water Board (LAP) was looking into the matter.

“We have been approached by Penang and we were told that the state may need additional sources of water besides what they are receiving from Kedah,” he said.

He added that the board had already convened a meeting with Penang Water Supply Corporation to discuss the technicalities.

“At this point, we are looking at channelling water from our sources in Kerian to Penang,” Nizar told reporters after launching the board’s Workers Union annual general meeting in Ipoh recently.

Nizar, who is also board chairman, also said the board was targeting to reduce its non-revenue water losses from 30% to 28% by 2010.

He said that currently the board was losing some RM60mil annually to non-revenue water.

“This includes burst pipes, stealing of water and so on.

“We hope the public will be more aware of this problem and report to us if they know of any incidents,” he said.

On a separate matter, Nizar said the board remained one of the few more “open-minded” government agencies in the state.

Recalling his experience during the campaign period of the 12th general election, Nizar said LAP was the only agency that allowed him to enter its premises while he was on his rounds.

“I was turned away from every other government agency simply because I was campaigning under the wrong colour.

“Only the LAP office in Manjung allowed me to greet its staff and even distribute my profile leaflets,” he said, triggering applause and laughter in the audience.

Nizar urged all LAP staff to continue their open-mindedness and not to fall into the “slave-master” system with its management staff.

“The management must also always be respectful of its staff.

“After all, all of you have been blessed with the privilege of managing the God-given gift of water.

“This is a noble duty that you are holding by handling one of the vital elements of life, so make sure that you do not misuse it,” he said.

Pakatan state govt still here, says Perak MB - Star

IPOH: Aug 31, 2008

Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin has debunked his predecessor's prediction that the Pakatan Rakyat government in Perak would fall today.

“I have been waiting for this date. It is Merdeka for us all. Today will be a day of true independence for all Perakians.

“On Aug 31, Pakatan will still have 31 state assemblymen and women and we are celebrating the true Merdeka,” he said.

Former mentri besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Tajol Rosli Ghazali made the prediction early last month.

Nizar, who launched the centennial celebration of SM Yuk Choy in Jelapang here yesterday, said the Perak Government had approved 1,000ha of land to be given to the state’s nine Chinese independent schools.

He said the state executive council had already approved the allocation in principle but had yet to identify a location.

“We are doing this to show the state’s recognition and appreciation of these nine si hua (independent) schools because we know that they have survived all these years without a single bit of government aid.

“Since the state government has limited funds, we decided to help the schools by giving land,” he said.

Later at a press conference, Nizar said the state government would ask the nine schools to form a company to manage the land.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

An offer to the hardcore poor - Star

Aug 28, 2008 By CHAN LI LEEN

THE Ipoh City Council is offering three months’ free rental to the hardcore poor who want to trade at the Central Market in the city.

Datuk Bandar Roshidi Hashim said there were still about 50 vacant stalls at the market and the council was prepared to offer them to those willing to make their own living.

Roshidi handing out aid from the council to some of the 245 hardcore poor at Stadium Indera Mulia in Ipoh.

“The council will even help them get the relevant licences needed to trade,” he said after handing out aid and cash to the hardcore poor in the Ipoh Barat and Ipoh Timor parliamentary constituencies yesterday.

Earlier in his speech, Roshidi encouraged those who were still young and physically capable to start small businesses to improve their earnings.

“Maybe, you can even pick up a skill or trade such as cropping hair to start your own business.

“We will help you and if anyone has other suggestions on what the council can do to help further, we can listen,” he told the 245 recipients present.

Each of them received RM100, 30kg rice, 5kg sugar and 2kg cooking oil.

According to Roshidi, the exercise was not a populist move by the council but rather part of its efforts and determination to help eradicate hardcore poverty in the state by year 2010.

On a separate matter, Roshidi said there were no plans to enforce the requirement for rubbish bins to be placed in front of residential and business premises for now.

“We have decided to relax the ruling because we are of the view that forcing it on the people will not make them realise that keeping clean is actually a joint responsibility of the council and the people,” he said.

Roshidi also said the council, together with the Welfare Department and police, would continue to carry out raids against illegal parking collectors in the city.