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By Peter Sibon
KUCHING, July 22: Serian MP Datuk Seri Richard Riot Jaem suggested that SK St Teresa Serian be upgraded as it is one of the oldest schools in the district.
He added that while the upgrading works was ongoing, the school could rent private premises in Serian Town to be used temporarily.
“St Teresa is one of the oldest schools in Sarawak and the oldest in Serian district. I’m the product of the school when I went there while I was in Primary Five, in 1963.
“I was informed that the school will be closed due to its dilapidated conditions and deemed unsafe to be used. I, as one of the alumni of the school do not agree with the closing of the school.
“Even if the buildings are deemed unsafe to be used, why not we rent other premises while the government build new one. I disagree with the idea for it to be closed because it is nostalgic and very meaningful for us who are former pupils of the school. There are some premises which could be used as a temporary measure.
“As such, I want the St Teresa School to be retained and I don’t want it to go extinct,” said Riot when debating on the Royal Address in Parliament today.
Riot, who is also the Prime Minister’s Special Envoy to Taiwan, Japan and South Korea also highlighted that need for Sarawak and Sabah to have its own rehabilitation centre for Social Security Organisation (Socso)-registered workers who have become victims of accidents while working.
Currently, the only one of such facility is located in Malacca, and he stressed that Sarawak and Sabah should have another one of such as centre to cater for their needs.
“I’m thankful that way back in 2015, when I was still the Minister of Human Resources, Socso’s Board of Directors have approved another one of such facility to be built.
“In fact, we have already identified a site with an area of about 60 acres, that is located next to the proposed ILP Serian for purpose.
“So, I would like suggest that it should be made a regional rehabilitation centre for the people of Sarawak and Sabah so that they don’t have to go all the way to Malacca when they need such facility,” he said.
On related issues, Riot also asked the federal government to build health clinics in Bunan Gega and Tebedu, besides the proposed new one located in Serian Town, to cater for the needs of the local communities.
“While the proposed health clinic type 3 for Serian has been approved and works was supposedly started in the beginning of this year. But it has to be stopped due to the Movement Control Order (MCO) triggered by Covid-19 pandemic. But we hoped that works on the project could start soon,” he stressed.
Meanwhile, Riot also highlighted the need to upgrade the customs, immigration and quarantine (CIQ) complex in Tebedu’s to meet current needs.
“The current Tebedu ICQ is too small and dilapidated compared to the ICQ located on the other side of the border. I’m thankful to the Minister of Home Affairs who visited CIQ Tebedu last Sunday, and during the Question and Answer Session, he informed this House that it will be implemented soon – in the coming 12th Malaysia Plan,” he said
Besides that, Riot also highlighted the need for a bank to be established in Tebedu Town.
“I would also like to urged the government to resurface the Serian-Tebedu Road which has never been tar-sealed even since its completion in 1990.
“This also include the need to improve a section pf the road at ‘Paren Binong’ which normally suffers from soil erosion during rainy season that has caused havoc to the road users. So, its high time that it should be flattened or need be, building a tunnel to ensure safety for road users,” he added. —DayakDaily