iSpeak: Performance of the Perak Government

By A. Jeyaraj

All these years, ratepayers have been complaining about poor services provided by MBI and the councillors, but now people are talking about non-performance of the MB, Exco members and assembly persons whom they had elected for a change. MBs actions are contrary to PH’s manifesto and principles.
Lady luck was with me when I went to the reading room of the Information Department at UTC on a Sunday morning for the first time. I saw a copy of the Executive Summary of Mid-term Review of the Eleventh Malaysia Plan 2016-2020.
In his Foreword, Tun M wrote, “The principles of good governance, strong institutions as well as integrity and accountability will be reinforced throughout the administration of the new Government to prevent corruption, leakages, misappropriation and abuse of power.”
In his preface, Mohamed Azmin Ali, Minister of Economic Affairs wrote “The Mid-Term Review outlines six pillars to support inclusive growth and sustainable development. The first pillar is to reform governance towards greater transparency and enhance the efficiency of public services. The fifth pillar focuses on enhancing environmental sustainability through green growth”.
Former MB Dato’ Seri Diraja Dr Zambry is an educationist, reads a lot and speaks fluent English which is an asset. I doubt whether the present MB reads because what he is practising is against the policies of what the PH government proclaims. His advisors should explain PH policies to him.
MB is adamant in destroying our forests which took millions of years to form. He does not know that once the forest is gone, it is gone forever. He is a stern believer that development can only come by destroying our forests. What is the high profile Perak Economic Advisory Council doing? What are their recommendations? We have not heard anything from them. Are their recommendations under OSA?
The public is upset over the way the government handled the illegal clearing of Kledang Hill. It is only after the outcry from the public did the MB reluctantly take action. What all residents in Ipoh could see, MB and his enforcement officers could not. The MBs lackadaisical approach led the people to come up with many conspiracy theories. There is a saying “hath eyes and seeth not”. Till now no one knows who the perpetrators are.
I often receive complaints that it is difficult to meet the Excos and assembly persons. I remember that sometime back on Tuesday mornings, Excos met the public at SUK building to listen to their problems. This practice should be reintroduced. Give the Excos an opportunity to come out of their office and talk to the people who voted for them and learn about the reality on the ground.
Tun M advocates transparency, but there is hardly any feedback from the government on what is going on in Perak. Discussions are held behind closed doors and the government is secretive. We voted for change which has not happened.
Public perception is that nothing is happening in Perak compared to other states. From the richest state, we are now number two from the bottom. Ipoh used to be the trendsetter for the country, but now it is one of the many cities in the country. The way things are going we may achieve the status of number one from the bottom.
It is going to be a year since the government took office and it is time for us to assess their performance. With input from my friend, I have come up with a simple questionnaire to assess the performance of the Perak government. The electorate can evaluate the performance of our government.

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