Confusing Road Name Kills

ambulance and fire engine

Ambulance and fire engine could not arrive in time seems to be the common reason for failure to save life and properties. After some finger-pointing exercise, all seemed forgotten until the next ‘episode’ of ‘not arriving in-time’.

Why the failure to arrive in time? Is it the traffic jam or the driver not familiar with the caller’s area/region that caused the failure? If it is just mere human factor then a better training in getting familiar with the towns and cities would prevent the next failure.

But what if it is the ever-changing road name that causes the failure and delay in saving life and properties? Take the road in front of my house, it was called Ulu Old Oya Road since the beginning of the road and a few years ago it was renamed Old Oya Road and recently some smart person tried to change it to Jalan Oya Lama. Are they the same to drivers of fire engine and ambulance? No, if I am the driver I will tend to treat them as different road; worse still residents in the area still use the Old Oya Road or Ulu Old Oya Road as their address when calling fire engine or ambulance. But at one end of the road named Old Oya Road (from town) and at the other end of the road it was named Jalan Oya Lama (from hospital side). That is why when I called ambulance to bring my sick wife to hospital, the ambulance never come until she was dead in my arms.

Should we all learn from my case and stop playing with road name changing game for the sake of life and properties and not politics?

How Would Telekom Malaysia Service Me?


My office was using SDSL (Download 1.5 M and upload 1.5M)under 2-year special rate of RM432 contract. On seeing the expiry date drawing nearer each day I decided to opt for Office in a box option (4M download and 512 kps upload). Coincidentally, Telekom Malaysia conducting seminar at Hotel Kingwood and I was invited to attend the seminar.

During the seminar I informed one of the lady officer SDSL service was unstable and speed was no difference from normal ADSL. At the same time I indicated my interest in getting Office in a box (4M download) option.

Two days after the seminar, 3 Telekom Malaysia representative came to see me trying to solve my SDSL unstable problem. They suggested to me to opt for leased line which would cost me more than RM2,000 a month. I told them to their face based on the volume of business and their quality of service it won’t be cost effective to go for leased line and I had no confidence in their ‘best available features’. Again I confirmed with them of the sign up of the Office in a box (4M). But after that meeting in my office none of them turn up and no effort to officially sign me up for the package in next 2 weeks time!

Two weeks later I received the SDSL statement telling me now to pay RM616 instead of RM432 after 2 years promotion contract. I dialed 100 to complain about the new rate and they advised me to apply a new SDSL account for promotion rate of RM432 and cancel the existing one. I told the officer that I told their office that I would like to sign up for Office in a box but nothing was done. They promised to investigate and it turned up to be the lady supposed to sign me up was on leave. I called up my friend in Kuching and signed up with the agent there and Office in a box internet was tested and installed in mere 2 days. The performance so far not much difference from my previous SDSL 1.5M (Download and Upload)account. And I paid extra for poor quality service for 2 years.

Three days later the same Telekom Malaysia’s lady Sophia called and asked me why I signed up with agent and “How would she service me?” That was a very good question indeed.

Non Loan Base Business Generating Huge Profit For Financial Institutions?

ATM Cards

When you want to make a photocopy of bank documents some bank might charge you RM1-RM2 per copy whereas you only need to pay RM0.05 – RM0.10 per copy at photocopying center. If you need to certify your bank documents for partial EPF withdrawal to settle your housing loan partially, some bank charge you RM30 – RM50 even if you produce your own documents for Bank officer to certify them.

Recent finding make me wonder what else they won’t charge their customers? For their ATM card they would either give you 3 free ATM transactions and thereafter they would charge you a fee per transaction; or they would charge you RM8 per year for unlimited transaction. Telco sim card is of similar quality and they only charge their customers RM5 during registration and thereafter no charges on sim card. This prompt me to wonder why Bank ATM card entitled bank to charge annual fee of RM8? May be the initial investment cost of hardware and software related to ATM machines is so high that they have to resort to this annual fee? Or just may be the cost of leased line from Telekom Malaysia took a bit bite on their annual income?

RM8 per year might looks small to some but when we assume each bank has about 500,000 saving accounts using ATM cards it will give RM2.5 million annual income to the Bank without any risk (unlike the risk in the case of loan and overdraft facilities). Perhaps Telekom Malaysia Bhd should lower their leased line cost so that banks could pass the saving to their customers and reduce or do away with the annual charge of RM8?

Where are we heading?

Forestry Department Brought To The Task

Water Catchment

About twenty years ago, One friend closed to Land and Survey informed me water catchment were given out to timber company for oil palm plantation after timber removed.

If such allegation is true then the problem highlighted recently in local newspaper is nothing new and it has been on-going thing. Recent weather change could be due to ‘the death’ of water catchment?

It is sad to see no action taken until now. Next thing we have to pay attention is could we reclaim the water catchment area from the private company? After it has been ‘sold’ to these companies. Unless we are not serious about the welfare of our future generation, isn’t it time for Sarawakian to look seriously into the matter and put a stop to such ‘mismanagement’? Should Forestry Department take all the blame or they are just following the instruction and doing their job?

The ‘abuse’ of water catchment zone has indicated very clearly that laws and regulations to protect our water source through protecting the water catchment area has become unenforceable owing to human factor.

Should the land office system, if computerised, give special coding to these water catchment zone or the like to prevent any transaction of protected areas intentionally or unintentionally?

What is next after knowing the mistake (of ‘selling’ water catchment area) made in the past? Will such issue blow out of proportion during the coming 13 general Election?

Worrisome Trend In Real Estate

Real Estate bubble

Price of houses and shophouses have been sky-rocketing and there is no indication that it is caused by high demand of residential and commercial building.

Some blamed it on the increase in material cost while other suggested that money-laundering may be the cause of price-hike.

Real Estate Bubble

The land value and material cost could never justify present terrace house price of RM380,000 or more and shop house price of RM950,000 or more. While other said the Association of developers agreed on such prices. If it is true, under the newly implemented Competition Act, such agreement on price is now illegal and punishable under the ACT.

Real estate prices have been increasing at such rate that it is no longer worth buying in Sibu if it is for investment purpose. With such price one can easily get a better deal in Kuala Lumpur, Johor bahru and Kuching as the population there is much bigger than Sibu therefore giving you better potential in term of investment.

Will such ‘high-price real estate’ bubble burst in 6 month time; especially when those buyers find it hard to make good each month installment or when base lending rate increment later on making it impossible to pay new installment? Will it affect banking industry subsequently? Bank Negara Malaysia ready for such possible undesirable outcome?

5 – Star Facilities Asked and Given. What is next?

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Recent renovation of shopping mall public toilets at level 5 invited more ‘shit’ as even ground floor tenants go all the way to level 5 to do their ‘business’ there. The management is proud to deliver the 5-star toilet for the tenants as well as public. It is classified as 5 star toilet because of marble floor tile and wall and new water tapes and toilet water jet system that help to clean your ‘secretion’.

However, one has to doubt the durability of the 5 – star toilet in view of die-hard habit of destroying something that come into their sight and touch of certain saboteurs of public facilities.

Frequent damage to traffic light, public toilets and playground facilities are very good evidences of kind of mentality of certain public. A few years ago, I saw a teenage girl using her index finger trying to ‘drill’ a hole into an office high-back chair; asking her why she tried to make a hole in the chair. She answered back : “Mana Ada?” while her index finger still digging into the chair. Will proper education do the job of removing such vandalizing mentality?

Last Sunday, I visited a kopitiam cum restaurant in Sungei Merah area intended to have a late lunch with my wife and noticed someone had made a hole at the seat of all the good chairs there. I felt sad for such a sight. Throwing Chewing gum on carpet and sticking used chewing gum to chairs are common in Sarawak.

If education will make a difference perhaps we have to start from pre-school to inculcate that vandalism is wrong and hopefully after 10 years of such education we will see noticeable reduction of all these vandalism.

Competition Act is losing its teeth?

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Competition Act Waiver Application

Competiton Act

Competition Act is taking effect from 1 Jan 2012 to ensure competition existed in all sectors of services and products retail/distribution outlets for the benefit of rakyat/consumers.

Yesterday, Star newspaper business column caught my eyes with the front page header Waiver Sought by 4 parties applying for exemption from Competition Act.

They are The Life Insurance Association of Malaysia (LIAM), Association of Malaysian Hauliers, a joint application by the Malaysia Shipowners Association, Shipping Association of Malaysia and federation of Malaysian Port Operators Council. The sole individual – Nestle Products Sdn Bhd.

Many could not see the reasons behind such waiver application and there is no reason to consider such application if waiver would put consumers/customers at disadvantage.

For an example, Life Insurance companies have been deciding jointly to extend the critical year of insurance policy citing financial downturn and hence the lower return of insurance companies investment as the main reason. This has put their customers in a difficult position as many of insured prompted to surrender their insurance policy for cash in view of continuous payment of insurance premium with no definite date of last payment. When misfortune do happen to this group of people; their family has no insurance protection to ensure their livelihood not affected by the untoward incidence. Hopefully the Competition Act will put a stop to this misery but now if the waiver application is approved it will be back to square one.

There is an annual fee of RM10,000 for the waiver application and RM20,000 block exemption. These companies willing to pay for such annual fees shows that their interest is affected by the Competition Act and such waiver is not necessary beneficial to their customers and consumers.

The authority should ensure that any waiver is for the benefit of raykat/consumers/users or else Competition Act will be redundant and serve no purpose.

Be patient and be gentle

Be kind be patient

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I have a lonely bird at my windows playing with its image reflected on the tinted glass panel. It comes everyday doing the same thing it amused me. But aren’t human being doing the same every day trying to find friends who have similar interests and will ‘poke’ on each others as friends?

I hope Malaysian is more mature than the bird and would treat each other as friend regardless of financial status, races, religion or political interest then Malaysia will have hope for the future.

Avoid using harsh words on each other, be kind as they are after all your brothers and sisters. Be patient and be gentle with those having different opinion from us.

Hard To Be A Good Councillor

Under-performing councillors urged to relinquish post

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It is a harsh warning to the newly appointed councillors in Miri by the CM. If we are really having under-performing councillors and since it is by appointment system whose fault could that be? To the councillors they might not see that they are under-performing since they have attended every meeting and agreed to every proposal tabled. So what is a good and performing councillor?

May be a public election of councillors system might or might not solve the problem? As only when a person voice out or act responsibly or irresponsibly then public will know who is not performing. Performance is decided by the person or group of persons affected by the councillors’ decision or proposal. If decision or proposal is beneficial to them they will perceive it as ‘councillors are performing’, otherwise councillors are not performing. What do you think?

Why Opposing Youth Wing Registration?



Last few days I was surprised to read certain association leaders openly objecting their respective youth body to register with relevant authority for activity fund saying this would cause disunity among association members and in the process dissociated youth wing from the parent body especially when youth wing is registered as recognised body and is financially independent.

However, it seems that none of them would care to find out the details. In fact, when Larry Sng suggested all youth wing organisation to register with the aurhority for activity fund what he meant was to register with Registrar of Youth and not with Register of Society. Therefore, there is no question of dissociating Youth Wing from parent body nor disunity among members.

May be there is worry of losing youth wing dependency on parent body owing to financial independence which prompted certain leaders to criticize Larry Sng for making such suggestion?