By Samuel Ng
WITH the looming threat of the Covid-19 virus, and the outcome of the recent Sabah election, the last thing we need is a similar event to trigger another wave.
Despite this life-threatening situation, Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) seems determined to proceed with the state election, even if it means putting lives at stake.
In actual fact, GPS has nine months to call for the next Sarawak election and should stop lying to the rakyat that they have no choice but to call for it at the height of the pandemic.
The current state assembly will only automatically dissolve in June while there are another 60 days to call for the election, which will be August next year.
There are so many things for the state government to focus on now – to help the SMEs, tackle job losses, provide financial aid to low income families as well as those in the childcare business, tuition centres, wedding businesses and tourism industry.
An election, would be the last thing the people want – as many are struggling to make ends meet – businesses were badly affected while informal workers are losing their incomes once again after Kuching was classified as a red zone.
With schools, kindergartens and nurseries ordered to shut for two weeks, some working parents are forced to apply for leave and stay home while others have to fork out extra and place their children under the care of nannies.
And because of the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee’s failure to ensure all premises follow the SOPs, and the “not so successful” contact-tracing involving a Chinese woman who worked at an entertainment outlet, all such outlets in Sarawak were forced to shut until further notice.
Besides, did the SDMC conduct an investigation into a Halloween party, which was attended by a confirmed case linked to the Green Hill Cluster?
The organiser may had complied with the SOPs in term of size of premise and maximum guests – however, did they practice social distancing, register or check-in via MySejahtera apps, or wear a mask?
The year 2020 has almost come to the end, please at least make sure the people are safe, able to put food on the table while children can return to school in January 2021.
Instead of telling people that the government has no choice but to call for an election.
Otherwise, if the people continue to suffer, and Covid-19 continues to rise, voters are most likely to express their feeling through the ballot box – because we have no other choice.
A PBB leader has also ignored Health DG Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham’s advice against holding a state election any time soon.
Dr Noor Hisham, a well-respected and much-loved “hero” who has led the country in the fight against Covid-19 over a year is in the best position to say so – not a politician!
We thought Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Abang Openg, who is the GPS chairman had said that he would seek advice from the Health Ministry and experts? Isn’t Dr Noor Hisham’s advice considered expert advice?
The same leader also said that no one can can predict what happens next, Covid-19 could become worse in the coming months – yes, no one can predict that – but the fact is a vaccine could be available early next year.
Also, stop telling everyone it is not the culture of the state government to allow the state assembly to dissolve automatically. The safety and health of our family and children are more critical than the so-called culture.
The views by the writer, do not necessarily represent those of this portal.