Machan rep says political interests behind ‘instigation’ of Kanowit hawkers, traders

The Sarawak Legislative Assembly (DUN) complex as seen from across the Sarawak River, Kuching. — file pic

By Wilfred Pilo

KUCHING, May 6: Machan assemblyman Allan Siden Gramong urged the people to take the May 2 incident involving hawkers and traders at the new Kanowit Market at the Kanowit bazaar with a “pinch of salt”.

When debating the TYT’s speech in the Sarawak Legislative Assemby (DUN) session today, Allan said he had to explain and clarify the matter.

He said despite the Kanowit District Council (KDC) staff following standard operating procedure, some of the hawkers refused relocate to the new Kanowit Market about 500 metres away from the old location.

He said that this refusal by a small group of hawkers had led to some chaos and commotion.

“Some of you might have seen videos of the incident and the scene was most shameful and disgraceful,” he lamented.

Allan explained that KDC had jurisdiction over Kanowit town to conduct matters in an orderly manner and also to build better facilities to help all the hawkers to earn a decent living.

“A majority have graciously and wilingly relocated while some refuse to, thus causing some chaos.”

He claimed that feedback gathered suggested that there were political interests behind the alleged instigation of the local hawkers who are mostly Iban against KDC.

“Their local leader was seen leading a demonstration to protest the move to the new market. Their action in instigating the people is uncalled for and by doing so, they are sowing discord and misunderstanding within the local community.

“They politicised the matter to make political gain. The motive is absurd and selfish. The decision to move to the new market is for the convenience of everyone and it should be appreciated by all regardless of political affiliation.”

Allan expressed his belief that these attempts to provoke chaos and confusion, bluff and lies would not work.

“Those local political leaders from Malaya-based political parties have been rejected by voters in previous elections and believe me, they shall be rejected again and again in the future,” he said. — DayakDaily