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By Lian Cheng
KUCHING, July 22: Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) information chief Datuk Idris Buang is put off by Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng’s distasteful statement of threatening Sarawak to pay back RM350 million first or there will be no school repair.
“Instead of giving Sarawak felicitations and warm greetings for celebrating Sarawak Day, the Finance Minister chose to give Sarawak such piece of message with clear bad-taste,” Idris told DayakDaily today.
The Muara Tuang Assemblyman said he was very surprised to read the news that has gone viral and wondered if Lim did it purposely to dampen the spirit of Sarawakians on Sarawak Day.
“He forgets that the whole of Malaysia owes Sarawak more in many ways. He also forgets that under the federal constitution, it is the obligation of the federal government to provide whatever needs for the up keeping of all schools in Sarawak.”
Idris said despite the fact that it was the duty of the federal government to repair these schools, Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg was willing to foot the bill first, when the federal government declared that it could not come out with the fund to repair more than 1,400 run down schools in Sarawak.
“Our Chief Minister’s readiness to help up by advancing state funds in order to ensure that our school children would not suffer any further, has been misconstrued whether deliberately or otherwise.”
Following Abang Johari’s willingness to come out with RM1 billion for school repair in contra with the Sarawak’s loan with the federal government, Lim insisted that Sarawak should make the RM1 billion loan repayment to the federal government first. Only after that, would the federal government disburse the RM1 billion back to Sarawak for school repair.
And today which is Sarawak Day, Lim has come down hard on Sarawak by saying that the federal government will speed up school repair in Sarawak if only Sarawak government made a repayment of RM350 million in debt which will be used for the first phase of school rehabilitation. — DayakDaily