By Mariam Mokhtar
The Perak Menteri Besar, Ahmad Faizal Azumu, announced on April 24, that Ipoh will have a new mayor by the end of the month, and that the person, will not be a political appointee.
According to him, the new mayor is an Ipoh local and is fluent in Japanese.
He also said that the appointment had received the consent of Perak ruler Sultan Nazrin Shah.
The old mayor, Zamri Man, is to be replaced because he is allegedly ill and has not been seen for many months.
A few questions for the MB
Why can’t the people of Ipoh elect their mayor? If the law has to be amended, then do something about paving the way for electing our mayors etc.
How long has Zamri Man been away from office?
Why has it taken all this time, to tell us that he has gone.
Who does Zamri report to and why did his absence not trigger concerns earlier? If people noticed, why wasn’t he dealt with and why were we not told earlier?
How many other officials or high ranking civil servants, go AWOL and how often are they reported and dealt with?
Has Zamri been drawing a salary during his absence?
Who signed the important contracts or work related things in his absence? If he signs it despite being ill, then what happens when problems occur in the future? Who is responsible for any problems?
What is wrong with Zamri? The rakyat is not heartless and we can understand that sick people need to recover, but to be absent for many months and not inform anyone, especially as the rakyat pays his wages, is bad.
Is Zamri ill because he cannot bear to work with the other Excos from Pakatan Harapan (PH)? Remember that Zamri was appointed, in 2015, when the former MB, Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir of Umno-Baru/BN was in office.
Is Zamri ill because he is aware of the dragnet from MACC allegedly closing in on former Umno-Baru/BN officials and does he fear the worst?
We have had numerous unproductive mayors (and Menteri Besars). Isn’t it time we had a change and opted for a Malaysian mayor who is non-Malay, perhaps a woman, but a person who has the interests of Ipoh, Perak and Malaysia at heart, and someone with vision and the ability to lead. Too many mayors have only promoted their own interests or the interests of their party.
The mayor can be fluent in Japanese or Double Dutch for all we care, but is he able to lead and has he vision? Will he be able to deal with the numerous problems faced by Ipohites? Will he be able to ward off the businessmen who want to destroy Ipoh and cut down the trees, blast the hills around Ipoh, build skyscrapers but they ignore the lack of green lungs in Ipoh, the public transport system, the litter, the terrible condition of the roads, the pollution, the congestion and the eyesores?