Tag Archives: Ipoh Echo Issue 151

Summoned for No Fault of Theirs

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My relatives came down from KL during Merdeka Holidays and went for breakfast Saturday September 1 at 8.15am on Leech Street. Except for the restaurants, other shops were not opened and they looked around and did not find anyone selling parking coupons. After breakfast they found a parking ticket on their car. Being a Saturday they were not even able to pay their fine.

They feel that they were summoned wrongly. If the parking fee starts at 8am, then MBI must have booths selling coupons from that time. MBI cannot expect tourists from outstation to carry coupons in their cars. Leech Street is famous for food and MBI must station their staff there to sell coupons. Ipoh is a food haven and MBI must not frustrate the tourists. Tourists start their day early.

Even on weekdays, shops selling coupons are not opened early. I found that many tourists have been unjustly summoned. They feel it is a ploy by MBI to increase income. MBI should have their own booths in areas popular with tourists or consider re-introducing parking meters in tourist spots.

I feel MBI must refund the money for wrongly summoning innocent victims due to their inadequate system of selling coupons. MBI must come up with a solution for this.

A. Jeyaraj

Japanese Students Feted

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University Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR), Josai University JapanA total of 150 student delegates and staff from both UTAR and Josai University, including its Vice President Prof Masumi Ishida, were feted to a sumptuous dinner at Syuen Hotel, Ipoh recently.

The dinner, a gesture of appreciation, was hosted by the Perak office of the Ministry of Tourism led by its director, Syahruddin Hamiid. Dato’ Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen, Tourism Minister, was awarded an honorary doctorate by Josai International University earlier this month.

During the dinner, which was supported by key players in the Perak tourism industry, a video was presented to guests showcasing the ten iconic destinations in Perak and the state’s ongoing homestay programmes.

Besides serving as a networking platform and bringing academicians and students together, it was an opportunity for the Japanese to be better acquainted with their local counterparts. The 90 students from Josai University were at UTAR on a two-week exchange programme.

After dinner, everyone was invited to witness the Citra Perak Amanjaya, a street fiesta at nearby Dataran MBI.

Emily

SMJK Yuk Choy 50th Anniversary Carnival

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SMJK Yuk Choy, Ipoh Parents and Teachers Association together with The Board Of Directors, successfully organised the 50th Anniversary Carnival in the school’s multi-purpose building on September 1. The objectives of the carnival was to raise funds to improve the school’s infrastructures in conjunction with the school’s 50th anniversary celebration. Mr Chan Hen Huan, the school principal was grateful that the tremendous support and contributions from the PTA, Board of Directors, teachers, students, local communities, various associations and guilds, old boys and old girls made this school carnival very lively and a success.

Former Technician’s House Gutted

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Yayasan Bina Upaya Darul Ridzuan (YBU)Mohd Hatta Mohd Junaidi, 61, a retired technician and his wife, Norhani Samsuddin, 59, can only reflect on the good times they shared in the house they lived in for over 25 years.

Their family house in Taman Panglima Gunung Rapat was destroyed in a fire caused by an electrical circuit in August. “It happened around 7.45pm. I was at the surau performing my Maghrib prayers when I was alerted by my son,” he told reporters. Mohd Hatta rushed home only to see the tail end of the fire. “It happened so fast. Luckily, none of my family members were hurt.”

Hatta’s daughter managed to pick up her infant child and escaped with her mother, Norhani in the nick of time. All of their belongings were destroyed. Damages were estimated at over RM100,000. Mohd Hatta had just finished paying the loan on the house.

“It’s my destiny,” Hatta lamented. “I am lucky my family is intact. I’ll pick up the pieces from here,” he said looking forlornly at his burned house.

Farid Zambri, an officer with Yayasan Bina Upaya Darul Ridzuan (YBU) was at the site upon receiving news of the tragedy. He gave RM500 to the victim. “Although Hatta doesn’t fit into our list of recipients, the foundation donates, nonetheless,” said Farid.

RM

Perak – A Traveller’s Review

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After having spent time in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, my mother and I decided to visit our friends in Ipoh. It was in mid-August of this year. My mother had been to Malaysia before but it was the first time for me. Upon arrival at the Medan Gopeng bus station, we were confronted with the first problem. Even though we had the address of our friend, none of the taxi drivers knew how to get there. Luckily, an English-speaking lady was kind enough to help us out.

We explored Ipoh the following day. The tourist information office gave us a small photocopied map, which obviously wasn’t good enough. Upon inquiry, a regular map was given to us. Later we found out about the Ipoh Heritage Trail. Why didn’t the tourist office inform us about this?

My mother remembered Cameron Highlands, she wanted to revisit it. Sadly, a large part of the once beautiful hill resort has been transformed into huge strawberry plantations covered with white plastic sheets. Nonetheless, we managed to catch a glimpse of some wonderful, not yet destroyed, tea plantations.

Relaxing at the beach and enjoying the sun is popular among European tourists and we were no exception. Pangkor certainly provided the aforementioned and we enjoyed being the only ones on the beach – something you cannot find in Europe. Unfortunately, many advertised tourist attractions weren’t maintained. A trail in Telok Nipah led us into the jungle and became impassable after just a hundred metres. The Jambatan Gantung was closed for maintenance although no maintenance was apparent.

The buses were reliable and comfortable but we never envisaged that getting back to Ipoh was problematic. The staff at the bus counters in Lumut was either absent or asleep. None could speak English. Very surprising as Lumut is a tourist destination. We ended up riding the local bus instead.

Our friends in Ipoh went out of their way to show us everything that Perak has to offer, including Gua Tempurung, mangrove forests, temples and the Gopeng Heritage House. We would have missed many of these sights had we travelled on our own. The local tour agencies sure missed a golden opportunity.

Notwithstanding the hiccups, we had a wonderful time in Perak – a region with a bountiful potential.

Manuel Duenas
Stuttgart, Germany

“Baby Hatch for all Hospitals”

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We refer to the Ipoh Echo Issue 149 dated August 16-31, 2012.

As stated in the article “Two have been sent to the state welfare department while the remaining four are still undergoing treatment at the hospital due to health complications.”

Amendments are as follows:

All 6 babies were surrendered to the State Welfare Department, most of them within 2-3 days after they arrived at our Baby Hatch. All the babies were healthy except for the first baby who required a minor neurosurgical operation. Four babies have since been adopted by childless couples as arranged by the State Welfare Department.

Dato’ Dr Hj Fadzli Cheah Abdullah
Medical Director
Ipoh Specialist Hospital

Dato’ KP, We Have A Job To Do Too!

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by Fathol Zaman Bukhari

They say good or bad publicity is publicity nonetheless. Most prefer to stay on the right side and will give an arm and a leg to remain in the good books. If something bad is written or said about them they will go ballistic, threatening legal action as an immediate recourse. Being in the media business we are never short of these flare-ups. Putting up with these inconsistencies is a way of life for most of us in the media world. What is good for the goose is good for the gander too, goes another saying. How true can it be?

What happens if we are on the receiving end? Should we resort to the courts as well? Or should we settle it the old fashion way by drawing a line on the ground and challenging the opposite side to cross first before striking. That was how we old geezers settled scores those days when catching fish and birds was a pastime far better than surfing the Internet like kids do these days.

Since achieving Independence on August 31, 1957, the country celebrates the auspicious occasion by holding a parade. Each state will hold its own with one mammoth parade in Kuala Lumpur known as the National Parade or Perbarisan Kebangsaan. Today the grand occasion is being alternated with Putrajaya or is held at one of the capital cities in the country. Its significance is, however, not diminished by way of locality, as the host state will go out of its way to be on top.

The 55th National Day Parade was held in Kuala Lumpur. Perak marked the occasion by holding a similar parade in Ipoh. The site has always been along Jalan Panglima Bukit Gantang with the iconic Town Hall as a backdrop. The grand stand where VIPs sit is right in front of the Town Hall. It could not have been more suitably located. Once the participating contingents marched down the road press photographers would jockey for spots to take the best shots. This scene is repeated each year. Having been a member of the armed forces, parades are nothing strange to me. I was a detachment commander of the King’s honour guards in 1972 and the parade adjutant the following year.

The last time I was involved, as an active player, was the state-level National Day parade in Seremban in 1997. I was a member of the organising committee and was responsible for security. I was privy to what took place on that fateful day. Fortunately, nothing untoward happened. The Yang DiPertuan Besar, the late Tuanku Ja’afar ibini Almarhum Tuanku Abdul Rahman and his consort were seen leaving the grand stand waving and smiling at the crowd. Chasing away ‘unwelcomed’ press photographers was not part of my job.

What took place on the morning of Saturday, August 31 at around 8am was truly uncalled for. Press photographers from the mainstream media and Ipoh Echo were shooed away by Police personnel. The reason – they were too close to the VIP stand and were in the way of the marching contingents. Press photographers in the way of the marching contingents? What utter bull!

Ipoh Echo’s photographer, Muhd Shahir (Ed) tried to reason with the sergeant major who was leading him out of the area. He showed his press pass and asked why another casually clad photographer, who had no identification whatsoever, was not similarly treated? The terse answer he got was, “Jangan pertikaikan kerja polis!” (Don’t question police’s job!). How ironic could it be? Weren’t the pressmen there to do a job too? Does it mean that when the Police are on the job no one else, media included, are allowed to do their job?

Dato’ KP (Ketua Polis), we have our job too! Our job is to cover the National Day parade. Police keep the peace while the media keep the rakyat informed. There is a defined line between the two. Dato’, it is not about who is going to cross the line first.

Attempted Robbery Foiled

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SitiawanQuick action by Rela members helped foiled a robbery from taking place. The incident, in front of the Hong Leong Bank in Sitiawan, took place at around 10.30am on Tuesday, September 4.

A businessman parked his car near the bank to deposit RM20,000. The man had yet to alight from his vehicle when a motorbike with two men, one armed with a machete, stopped next to the car. One of them shattered the side window and demanded that the cash be handed over. An alert motorist, sensing that a crime was being perpetrated, rammed his car into the robbers’ motorbike. The duo were flung off their machine.

The commotion attracted passers-by. One of them, a Rela volunteer, notified the police and alerted other Rela members. The thieves dashed into the nearby wooded area and hid with angry residents in pursuit. They cordoned the area and some began to search the undergrowth for the culprits. Police then arrived and took charge.

One of the two men was discovered and apprehended, as he tried to escape. The other remained in the hedge and would not come out. The police summoned the fire department. The hedge was set on fire. Still the man could not be located.

Finally, an excavator was driven in to clear the shrubbery to facilitate the search. As the excavator roared and moved into the greenery, the robber dashed into the open right into the arms of the residents. The presence of police did not prevent the two robbers from getting the thrashing they deserved. The 100-odd residents who were at the scene vented their anger on the would-be robbers. It was poetic justice.

The quick action on the part of the Rela volunteers and the authorities saved the day. The Rela volunteers are determined to reduce the increasing crime rate in the district and have set up a citizen watch group of sorts.

According to reliable sources only part of the money was recovered after the incident, the remaining is still missing. OCPD Manjung, ACP Jaafar Baba would not comment much when contacted. He insisted that the case is still under investigation.

Sharm

Tok Batin’s House Up in Smoke

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Yayasan Bina Upaya Darul Ridzuan (YBU)Tok Batin Nasri Ngah, 41, of Kampung Pisang, Jalong could only look when his wooden house was gutted to the ground on August 22. “It happened so quickly,” he said. “I was in the kitchen boiling water over an open stove when the fire started. The fire engulfed the whole house leaving me little time to salvage my belongings.”

Luckily for the Orang Asli elder none of his family members were around when the fire broke out. “They were out visiting their relatives and friends as it was the fourth day of Hari Raya,” he remarked. “I dare not speculate what the outcome would have been had any of them been here. Thank God.”

The fire victim was met at the site of his burned house recently by members of Yasayan Bina Upaya Darul Ridzuan (YBU). They were there to survey the extent of the damage and to provide assistance where possible.

Nasir received a food package, courtesy of YBU, from the visitors. The foundation is considering building a new house for Nasir upon recommendations by the survey team.

RM

Mother Teresa’s Reading Shelter Celebrates 3rd Anniversary

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Mother Teresa’s Reading Shelter celebrated its 3rd anniversary by launching a new programme on Vocational Training for children who cannot be enrolled in schools due to insufficient documentation. Two students from “My School” programme have started their sewing classes.

Dr J. Anantham, Director of the Shelter, said that with the limited funding available, they provide services within their means and feels sad that the facilities available are not being fully utilised. He added that the main obstacles to their efforts are the ignorance, selfishness misguided and meaningless ‘pride’ of some of the parents and guardians of the children who will not allow the children to make use of the facilities. They have place for ten students in their preschool programme, but have only been able to enrol seven. The highlight of the year was a Telematch organised for non-school going children to give them a “feel” of sports which is an annual event in all schools. The Shelter has set up a Facebook account. The Shelter needs volunteers and sponsors. For further details call: Lucy at 016-5631439.

AJ