Friday, May 9, 2008

MP puts notice on motion to debate NS trainee's death - NST

May 9, 2008 By Brenda Lim

Batu Gajah MP Fong Po Kuan is putting in a notice for an emergency motion for the Parliament to debate the death of 18-year-old NS trainee Too Hui Min next week.

She said one death among National Service trainees is too many, said

"I hope this will be debated as there has been too many incidents of deaths among NS trainees," she told reporters after paying a courtesy call on Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin at his office here yesterday.

She said Too's death on Wednesday and previous cases of fatalities showed that the NS training programme was riddled with weaknesses to the extent that parents cannot be reassured on basic issues such as the safety and health.

Fong called on Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to stop the NS training programme, observing that some 110,000 are expected to undergo the programme this year.

She said she never supported the programme since it was first mooted in 2003.

"In just 90 days, you cannot achieve the three objectives of the NS training programme - racial unity, patriotism and character building," she said.

On her meeting with Nizar yesterday, she said she presented a memorandum listing several problems faced by her constituents, including food hawkers being told by the Kinta Barat district council that they could not renew their licences without purchasing a grease interceptor from a certain company.

"The grease interceptor is expensive and not very effective," she said, adding that traders were informed that they could only buy from a Selangor-based company.

She also highlighted the plight of the Perak Chinese Women Association, a non-profit body for single mothers, children and the elderly, which received pledges of up to RM140,000 for a new building on Jan 27, but had yet to receive payment from the former state government (RM30,000), Barisan Nasional (RM50,000), the Association for Wives of Perak Elected Representatives or Baiduri (RM20,000), former deputy state speaker Datuk Yik Phooi Hong and former state executive councillor Datuk Tan Chin Meng (RM20,000).

Other problems include squatters appealing for lower premiums, a temple requesting for more burial ground, and calls for repairs for the leaking roof of the Menglembu wholesale market.

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