Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Take RM15.4 million repairs allocation in right perspective –Dr. Jeffrey

Kota Kinabalu:    “Sabahans should stopped from being fooled and hoodwinked by the federal government and take the RM15.4 million allocation for repairs of schools in the right perspective” said Datuk Dr. Jeffrey Kitingan, STAR Sabah Chief, commenting on the Chief Minister’s announcement that RM15.4 million has been received to repair schools in Sabah.

In case everyone including the Chief Minister has forgotten, the Deputy Prime Minister cum Education Minister had promised verbally in February 2014 that RM1.0 billion was allocated to rebuild and repair 600 odd schools in Sabah and Sarawak.

The RM15.4 million is an affront and a slap in the face of Sabahan education.  It is not even enough to repair the many schools that were damaged by the last floods let alone rebuild the several schools that were razed to the ground in the past few months alone.  

What more to repair the 640 schools in Sabah which the Chief Minister had stated were in poor condition?

If the federal government and the Deputy Prime Minister was sincere on the RM1.0 billion allocation, RM500 million would have been sent to the Chief Minister for school repairs, not just RM15.4 million.  There would have been no necessity for the CM to reiterate that the Sabah government will continue to request for additional allocations from the federal government to repair other schools that were in need of maintenance.

“In February, it was highlighted that the verbal promise of RM1.0 billion should be sent immediately or at least put into writing.   It is now proven once again that the verbal promises by federal leaders are worthless and made recklessly without taking into consideration the feelings of the people in Sabah and Sarawak, who are equal partners to Malaya in the formation of Malaysia” added Dr. Jeffrey. 

The DPM may now find himself helpless to honour his RM1.0 billion promise since the funds come from the Finance Ministry which is controlled by the PM cum Finance Minister.

It appears that the people of Sabah and Sarawak have been waiting in vain on the transfer of the RM1.0 billion allocation to the Sabah and Sarawak governments.   It is another broken promise to the people of Sabah and Sarawak.

Considering the efforts of the teachers in Sabah and Sarawak and the trying environment and dilapidated schools, the federal government should pay these teachers a monthly hardship allowance in recognition of their sacrifices for teaching in Sabah and Sarawak.

Datuk Dr. Jeffrey Kitingan
Chairman, Borneo Heritage Foundation (BHF)
01 June 2014


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