PBB leader chides MTUC Sarawak secretary for ‘outrageous’ statement

Datuk Idris Buang

KUCHING, Feb 20: Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) information chief Datuk Idris Buang strongly rebuts Malaysian Trade Union Congress Sarawak Division secretary Andrew Lo’s recent statement that the Sarawak government was not creating jobs for its people.

“I reckoned it was a personal statement with a political agenda. His (Lo’s) accusations of the state government, which in simple terms could mean that “the state government is doing nothing in job creation”, is totally outrageous.

“He clearly and inaccurately used the story of the 40-odd Sarawakian youths (who have been duped in Cambodia) in making his analysis so as to come to that erroneous conclusion. What he did is very misleading and unfair,” Idris said in a statement today.

Idris was commenting on Lo’s statement that schooled the state government on a wide range of issues, especially on the seeming lack of job opportunities and a host of other crucial developments that did not seem to benefit Sarawakians.

The case of the 40-odd youths who were scammed in Cambodia is now under police investigation.


Idris, who is Muara Tuang assemblyman, pointed out that Lo’s statement also contained some disparaging insinuation with political innuendos, which he believed was not Sarawak MTUC’s stance.

“I had been informed by some insiders in MTUC that Andrew Lo’s statement was purely his own, and it was not one passed in any meeting of the Sarawak Division of MTUC.”

He asserted that it would be quite unethical, improper and an abuse of his (Lo’s) position as the division secretary to make such an unprofessional statement with crude randomised and unverified information without the prior approval of the rest of MTUC’s office bearers, more so when it is of the nature that is egregiously insulting.

“Job creation has been a priority of the state government. It has been tenaciously consistent in its effort to stimulate economic growth and development with a view that jobs by the thousands could be created.

“Efforts such as being done by Tegas (Tabung Ekonomi Gagasan Anak Bumiputera Sarawak), MESTR (Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Research), MIED (Ministry of Industrial and Entrepreneurs Development) and all the various government link companies (GLCs) and statutory bodies have been commendable.

“He should check the results of efforts by these entities before painting wrong and dishonest picture for cheap publicity. He can check with the Sarawak Planning Unit (SPU) for more such information.”

Idris believed that MTUC, as a whole, is professional in approach and management.

“In the best interest of its members, who are our country’s valuable asset, MTUC could work or engage constantly and closely with the government in order to shape more reasonable and workable policies and implementation mechanism.

“On ways to enhance efforts to create a meaningful number of jobs each year, MTUC ought to be a ‘strategic partner’ of the state government as well as the federal government without making itself a ready tool or vehicle for any political agenda.”

Meanwhile, in a statement today, MTUC Sarawak has come out in support of Lo.

“All statements made by Andrew Lo as the Secretary of MTUC is fully approved and endorsed by MTUC division, affiliates and workers in Sarawak.

“It is his core responsibility to raise all issues involving the social economic well being of Sarawakians and we have full confidence in him doing so without fear or favour.

“We are disappointed but not surprised that PBB, instead of addressing the legitimate issues raised, chose to to go on personal attack and questioned the integrity of our officials,” said MTUC Sarawak chairman Mohd Ibrahim, adding that Lo’s statement reflects the stance of MTUC as has been consistently expressed on many occasions. — DayakDaily