Wednesday, June 30, 2010

MP Segambut says tougher probe needed on ‘happy workers’

Source: (30/6/2010)

KUALA LUMPUR: Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng feels there is “something fishy” about the plight concerning migrant workers at the construction site of the new Istana Negara.

He said he found it hard to believe reports in the Chinese media that the workers have been duly paid their wages. “I find this fishy because I received an SOS call from the migrant workers. I went and spoke to them personally. I have seen their living conditions and they told me their woes. So, it makes no sense that they should claim that they have been paid now.”

Yesterday, project contractor Maya Maju Sdn Bhd invited only the Chinese press to visit the site and interview the workers.

“The reporters said they were told to interview ‘selected’ workers. “To read reports about ‘happy’ workers and see pictures of them holding placards stating that they were paid their wages and ‘were happy working there’ is very dodgy,” said Lim. He also said that labour officers should have sought the help of officials from the foreign embassies so that the affected workers could be encouraged to speak out.

The MTUC has blasted the FT Labour Department, saying that it had conducted a shoddy investigation on the case. “How can you conduct an investigation by speaking to just eight people?” MTUC president Syed Shahir Syed Mohamud asked. Commenting on a report in The Star yesterday which quoted a department official as saying that their probe had been completed after interviewing eight workers, Syed Shahir said government agencies should be more serious in handling such matters.

Federal Territories and Urban Wellbeing Minister Datuk Raja Nong Chik Raja Zainal Abidin also exp-ressed his disappointment over the matter and stressed that action must be taken against errant contractors. “The Government has paid the contractors and if the workers are not getting paid, then the money must be going elsewhere,” he said.

A report submitted to Human Resources Minister Datuk Dr S. Subramaniam by the FT Labour Department revealed that there was no truth to the allegations that the workers were not paid. However, it will continue to monitor the situation, it said.

Monday, June 28, 2010

MP: Act against those who have not paid workers

Concerned MP: Lim talking to some of the workers at the work site, inquiring mostly about their welfare.


KUALA LUMPUR: The contracts of errant sub-contractors who failed to pay foreign workers hired to build the RM800mil Istana Negara project here should be terminated, said Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng. “The main contractor of the project should terminate the sub-contractors who failed to pay the foreign workers immediately,” said Lim. Lim, who is also a lawyer, said that under the law the main contractor could dismiss errant sub-contractors who failed to ensure the welfare of the workers. “By ignoring the workers, the main contractor is just as irresponsible as the sub-contractors,” said Lim, who had alerted The Star about the plight of the foreign workers.

The Star reported that hundreds of foreign workers at the construction site of the new palace had not been paid their wages for three months. The workers alleged that they were exploited because many of them did not have work permits. Despite being asked by police to come forward and lodge a report about the harassment, many of the foreign workers had refused to do so for fear of being deported. Other workers told The Star that they were being moved to another construction site in another state.

Meanwhile, Tenaganita president Irene Fernandez said it was understandable that the workers were fearful of losing their jobs. “The main contractor must take responsibility and investigate the matter immediately,” she added. Human Rights Commission of Malaysia Commissioner James Naya­gam expressed concern over the issue and said that Suhakam would not tolerate such abuse. “It is the duty of the employer to ensure that the basic rights of their workers, such as wages, accommodation and rest days, are provided. I am embarrassed to hear of such things happening in Malaysia,” he said. The project’s main contractor, Maya Maju Sdn Bhd, said it was the responsibility of the sub-contractors to pay their workers.

In GEORGE TOWN, DAP chairman Karpal Singh said the Labour Department should investigate the matter and ensure that the foreign workers were paid their dues. “There is something wrong with our system when workers are not being paid for the work they are doing, especially when foreign workers are involved.”

Lawyer gets distress call about police raid at worksite


KUALA LUMPUR: A distress call from a source saying that the police had conducted a raid at the Istana Negara construction site in Jalan Duta was received by Human Right lawyer N. Surendran. “The source said police and immigration officers had moved into the construction site and rounded up some people at about 9.15pm. “I lost contact with the source soon after I received the information,” he told The Star.

The paper yesterday highlighted the predicament of the foreign workers who were hired to build the RM800mil Istana Negara but were not paid their wages.

Meanwhile, Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng said he had also received a tip-off that there was a raid being conducted at the kongsi last night. “I went to the construction site and waited at the front gate for a while but I couldn’t see or hear nothing. “It was the same scenario at the back gate. Everything was dark and there was not a single guard in sight,” he said.

The Star contacted several workers at the site but only one person took the call, saying police patrol cars were seen at the site in the afternoon. Bukit Aman said no raids were conducted at the site and Brickfields deputy OCPD Supt Azri Abd Rahman also said he had no knowledge of any raid.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Fallen tree leads to flash floods

Wide load: The fallen tree lodged in the monsoon drain is believed to be the cause of flash floods in Kampung Kassipilay.

Source: (By BAVANI M, 26/6/2010)
A huge tree that fell and lodged inside a monsoon drain in Kampung Kasipillay, Jalan Ipoh, has been identified as the cause of flash floods in the area.

N.R Martin, 66, who lives nearby, said he discovered the cause of the floods about three weeks ago after a downpour which flooded his house. “The water rose to about two metres and damaged my eletrical appliances and sofa set,’’ Martin said, adding that his house was about 75m from the monsoon drain. “I knew that something must be wrong, so I decided to check the drain and that’s when I saw the tree,’’ he said. Martin said he immediately called the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) and informed them about the tree, but until now nothing has been done to remove it.

Martin then sought the help of Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng who visited the area on Friday. Lim said he would contact DBKL to get the tree removed.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Almost 50,000 shotgun licences issued

Source: (23/6/2010)

Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said 48,823 shotgun licences were issued by the ministry till April this year. Hishammuddin said from the total, 68.7 percent or 33,545 licences were given to Malays, 10,972 or 22.5 percent to Chinese and 614 or 1.3 percent to Indians and 3,682 or 7.5 percent to other races and ethnic bumiputera. "The figure will however, change from time to time as licences will be cancelled or new ones issued," he told the Dewan Rakyat, here today.
The Home Minister was answering Lim Lip Eng (DAP-Segambut), who wanted to know the total number of permits issued from 2005 to 2009 according to states, race and the number of owners of guns, until April this year.
Hishammuddin said the ministry would also monitor such procedures to ensure only deserving individuals who qualified, were issued such licences.
- Bernama

I called for the sacking of Inspector-General of Police

Source: (23/6/2010)

Lim Lip Eng (DAP-Segambut) called for the sacking of Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan as a condition for approving the RM4bil allocation to the Royal Malaysian Police under the 10MP.

Lim questioned whether the force deserved the allocation, judging by the quality of their work. For example, he said the policemen did not know when to use firearms and when not to. “Last Sunday, on the front page of all Chinese dailies, was an article of a tout who assaulted a policeman and ran away. Three weeks ago, a Selayang councillor was beaten by 30 people wearing Perkasa T-shirts while three policemen just watched. Why didn’t they shoot?” he said.

At this juncture, Datuk Bung Mokhtar Radin (BN-Kinabatangan) interjected in his usual brash manner, “When the police take action, you protest and condemn, and when they take the soft approach, you criticise too. What is it that you want?”

Khalid Samad (PAS-Shah Alam) then stood up to correct Bung Mokhtar, saying what the Opposition had objected strongly to was the fatal shooting of 14-year-old Aminulrasyid Amzah in April, and not of villains.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Improve bus service in Segambut, RapidKL urged

Photo by Sin Chew Daily

Source: (By YIP YOKE TENG, 21/6/2010)
Unreliable: Bus commuters in Taman Sri Sinar, Segambut, waiting for the buses. They claimed that the service is irregular.

Public bus service provider RapidKL has been urged to improve services in Taman Sri Sinar and the surrounding areas in Segambut.

Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng said the company could have focused only on lucrative routes and neglected inner routes. “The bus service is irregular and that causes a lot of inconvenience to those who do not have vehicles,” he told reporters on Saturday at a bus stop in Jalan 30/38A. He said the bus driver told him that the bus came every 20 minutes during peak hours but there was no fixed schedule during non-peak hours. He added that he had written two letters to Syarikat Prasarana Negara Bhd, one in July last year and the other last month, to highlight the matter but received no response. Lim said the company was awarded a concessionaire contract to provide stage bus services in Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Johor Baru, and it should provide fair service to all. “Under the 10th Malaysia Plan, the government is allocating RM100mil for the expansion of bus service and I hope the company can provide quality service,” he added.

Resident John Rajamani, 41, said two Cityliner buses and one Metro bus used to service the housing estate but now there was only RapidKL. “The unreliable service has deterred many from taking public transport,” he said, adding that air-conditioning in the buses was bad, too.

Another resident, Mohd Ishak Sidin, 41, said commuters going to work in the morning had no choice but to walk 700m to a bus stop in Jalan Segambut because more buses plied the route. He added that there should also be feeder buses connecting the housing estates with the Segambut KTM station.

Home Minister ducked my question on when police can use firearms

Friday, June 4, 2010

PM didakwa beri jawapan bercanggah projek RMK9 (Salhan K Ahmad, 4/6/10)
Ahli parlimen Segambut Lim Lip Eng hari ini mempertikaikan tindakan Perdana Menteri Datuk Seri Najib Razak yang didakwa memberikan jawapan bercanggah berhubung status projek bawah Rancangan Malaysia Kesembilan (RMK9). Katanya, Najib dalam jawapan lisannya di Dewan Rakyat pada April lalu menyebut, sebanyak 705 buah projek berada dalam status Belum Mula.
Jawapan itu adalah bagi soalan yang dikemukakan ahli parlimen Setiawangsa Datuk Zulhasnan Rafique. Bagaimanapun, dalam jawapan bertulisnya kepada Lim (kiri), Najib menyebut hanya 11 buah projek yang berstatus Belum Mula bawah RMK9, melibatkan peruntukan sebanyak RM82 juta.
"Macam mana soalan sama tapi jawapan berbeza-beza?," soal Lim dalam sidang media di pusat khidmatnya di Segambut, Kuala Lumpur hari ini. "Kalau 11 projek sudah berjumlah RM82 juta, kalau 705 projek, berapa jumlah peruntukannya?" soalnya lagi. Tambahnya, beliau percaya perdana menteri telah mengelirukan Dewan Rakyat dengan jawapan-jawapannya yang didakwa berbeza itu. 'Tak tahu apa yang diperkatakan' Sehubungan itu, Lim berkata, beliau akan menuntut penjelasan berhubung kekeliruan itu pada sesi perbahasan selepas pembentangan RMK10. "Perkara dalam RMK9 pun belum diselesaikan lagi, macam mana hendak bentangkan RMK10?" soalnya. Katanya, beliau memperoleh jawapan bertulis itu selepas perdana menteri memberi jawapan lisan kepada Zulhasnan Rafique pada 14 April lalu. Kedua-dua soalan tersebut adalah berhubung status projek bawah RMK9 serta jumlah peruntukan yang diberikan. Katanya, berdasarkan kedua-dua jawapan berbeza itu, beliau menyimpulkan bahawa "perdana menteri kita tidak tahu apa yang diperkatakannya".
Beliau juga percaya, Najib yang juga pengerusi BN bertindak sedemikian dengan tujuan "menutup kelemahan mereka dan mengelirukan rakyat". "Bukti ini menguatkan lagi kepercayaan saya bahawa kerajaan BN, dalam memberi jawapan kepada rakyat di parlimen, kebanyakan daripadanya adalah salah, palsu dan (besifat) penipuan," katanya.
Statistik dikawal agensi kerajaan
Beliau juga yakin, pendedahan itu hanyalah gambaran kasar daripada masalah yang lebih besar. "Sebab kebanyakan jawapan yang kami terima di parlimen, (wakil rakyat pembangkang) tidak boleh sahkan. "Semua data statistik ini dikawal oleh agensi bawah kerajaan BN," katanya. Tambahnya, dengan "pembongkaran" tersebut, beliau berharap BN akan bersikap lebih telus dan jujur semasa memberikan jawapan di parlimen. "Kita jangka kerajaan akan bentangkan cadangan untuk projek-projek raksasa (dalam pembentangan RMK10). "Harapan kami (wakil pembangkang) ini bukan hanya satu sandiwara dengan mengatakan ianya projek untuk rakyat tapi akhirnya ditinggalkan," katanya lagi.
Lim memberi contoh satu projek pembesaran sebatang jalan sepanjang 3 kilometer di Segambut melibatkan kos lebih RM40 juta yang tidak selesai walaupun sudah diluluskan bawah RMK9.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Houses-cum-restaurants irk neighbouring folk

Favourite spot: Residents believe the diners will follow the restaurants since the food is reported to be quite tasty.

Source: (By PRIYA MENON, Photo by ART CHEN, 3/6/2010)

A FEW terrace house owners along Jalan Dutamas Raya in Kuala Lumpur are turning their homes into illegal eateries, and this is creating a host of problems for neighbouring residents. For more than five years now, several house owners along Jalan Dutamas have redecorated their backyard, turning them into cosy restaurants, feeding hundreds of people each day. It began with a nasi lemak stall that operates from morning till mid afternoon and many soon followed suit. The youngest member of the illegal restaurants is a mamak stall that operates 24 hours. It is also the biggest yet. A resident from Prima Duta who wished to remain anonymous said he has lodged many complaints with the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) but no action was taken against them. To make matters worse, access into their condominiums are always blocked as cars are triple parked along the roads. “We can’t even get out sometimes, they (restaurants) have no control over the traffic so their customers park everywhere,” he added.

A resident who wanted to be known as Mrs. Lim said congestion is really bad during rush hour as cars are parked haphazardly along the road. Those who stop by the restaurants for breakfast have total disregard for the neighbours, forcing cars to spill on to the oncoming traffic. Since the restaurants mushroomed, floods have become a recurring nightmare as the drains are clogged with rubbish. Mrs Lim also said during the quiet hours at night, she could hear the clanging of pots and pans at the restaurant. “At night when it is really quiet, you can hear them cooking away especially the mamak stall since they operate 24 hours a day,” she added. The anonymous resident said they had no personal vendetta against the restaurants but they feel they should be relocated to a better location. “If you place them at a proper place, their diners will definitely follow them because the Nasi Lemak is really good,” he added.

Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng said he has received constant complaints from the residents over the years. Lim has forwarded the complaints to the DBKL but did not receive a satisfactory reply. “They said they will allow the restaurants to operate because they are in the midst of shifting them to another location. “However, this is unacceptable because they are still illegal. If there are illegal vendors or squatters DBKL would immediately tear down the place so why are these three restaurants getting special treatment?” he asked.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

License for sports betting in KL

This morning, MP Segambut submitted a memorandum to KL City Hall's advisory board, urging it to make public on its stand on sports betting.