Mayor Dato’ Roshidi Hashim’s efforts in winning over the media are paying dividends, judging from the response by bureau chiefs in Ipoh. His latest attempt involved a hi-tea get-together at a seafood restaurant in Greentown. His choice of the eatery in Ipoh’s business district was a pleasant surprise to the invitees, as few had expected it to happen.
The afternoon tea on Friday, March 22 was organised with a difference. Roshidi’s off-the-cuff welcoming speech is normally peppered with humour aimed at putting the guests at ease. This time around, however, he had other things in mind. The presence of a well-dressed Malay gentleman and his equally striking wife was obvious.
The couple were duly introduced by the mayor. The gentleman was Encik Kamaruddin Hj Ismail, a former staff of the Perak Information Department. Kamaruddin retired from his post as a supervisor at the Ipoh-based department in 2010 after serving 42 years in the federal agency. He started as a projectionist in 1968.
Kamaruddin’s presence was for a reason. He was nominated the city’s most exemplary resident (Wargakota Ipoh Contoh), a recognition accorded to Ipohites for their voluntary contributions towards the betterment of the city. Kamaruddin won praises for his voluntary works in keeping his residential area in Gunung Rapat clean. He was presented with a wristwatch by Roshidi.
The mayor took the opportunity to highlight issues relating to rubbish collection and illegal dumpsites. An average of about 500 metric tons of waste are collected daily in the city. “It costs the Council RM40,000 a day to dispose of the rubbish,” he remarked.
On the issue of illegal dumpsites, a total of 12,000 sites were cleared in 2012. Close monitoring, gotong royong and posting of signages are some of the methods employed to keep these sites from proliferating. He implored upon Ipohites to be more civic-minded and to help the Council keep the city rubbish-free.