By Jaythaleela K
MIRI, April 15: Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) today chided the federal government and Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng for bulling Sarawakians again, this time with their U-turn on the RM1 billion contra deal to repair dilapidated schools in Sarawak.
SUPP secretary-general Datuk Sebastian Ting Chiew Yew said his party fully supported Telang Usan assemblyman Dennis Ngau’s call on Putrajaya to do a “reverse U-turn” on this issue.
Ting said the initial agreement announced on Feb 20 was to use RM1 billion of the state government’s debt with the federal government to repair/upgrade dilapidated schools in the state.
“But we were told last week by our Minister for Education, Science and Technological Research Dato Sri Michael Manyin Jawong that this deal to help our rural school children is now off.
“Today, we read in the newspapers that our chief minister, Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg, said Lim Guan Eng wanted the state government to pay our money of RM1 billion, meant for repairing dilapidated schools, to the Finance Ministry first, meaning an advance to Lim Guan Eng’s ministry.
“Based on what our chief minister said, he (Lim) wants us to pay in advance, and the allocation for repairs of dilapidated schools would be based on the annual allocation, which we don’t agree,” emphasised Ting.
Ting believed the majority of Sarawakians supported Abang Johari’s decision.
“The federal government and Lim Guan Eng repeatedly said they do not have money, yet they had just decided to construct a RM1.6 billion international airport in Kulim, Kedah, which is next to Penang, rather than repairing dilapidated schools in rural Sarawak,” he lamented.
The Malaysian political landscape has changed tremendously since the last general election on May 9 last year; hence, Ting advised Sarawakians to help safeguard the state and work hard to improve its economy and raise the standard of living of the locals. — DayakDaily