Monday, November 24, 2008

Rebuttal to Yin

21/11/08 I refer to Yin Ee Kiong’s letter published in NST Nov 20 under the titled caption Road Names - "Not to be changed at a whim".

I am not a State Executive Councilor to start with. I agree that road names ought not to be changed at the whims and fancies of any government of the day.

However the above titled caption cannot be made a measured attempt in any form to level criticisms against the DAP which is a component party of Pakatan Rakyat that forms the current Perak State Government, in its plan to rename Jalan Silibin to Jalan Patto. The Pakatan Rakyat Government made a pledge before the election anchored on it’s believe that there must be competency, accountability and transparency in any of it’s decision and decision making process. This believe is to add poise to Pakatan Rakyat’s commitment in ensuring a heightened public participation by all in the affairs of the State.

No decision is made by the State Government which is the ultimate authority on renaming roads. I am certain that no decision will be made by the State Authority against the wishes of the people. the recent General Election is a good history lesson for all in the seat of power. However the comments and presentation of some concerned authors who have highlighted their unhappiness in the course of action taken by DAP to look into the public sentiments on this issue of renaming the Silibin Road only goes to prove that DAP which remains a responsible component party of Pakatan Rakyat Government accepts opinions and views no matter how critical its tones suggests. We are now seeing a greater democratic space and fuller public participation by events prior to decision making process and decision itself.

I now make known my reason as to why we entertain the prospect of Jalan Silibin renamed Jalan Patto : 1. It is the public that wanted Jalan Silibin to be renamed as Jalan Pattoo.

2. It is the public that wanted a man seen not as a DAP icon but one who contributed immeasurably the alternative views in parliament against the government of the day, be remembered and never be forgotten in the annals of our history.3. It is the public that suggested that the late Patto be remembered in Silibin as the residents of this area are the ones who gave him the voice in parliament.

4. And yet again it is the public’s assurance that Jalan Silibin has no historical value and renaming it as Jalan Patto would only add and enhance rather than take away a shining shard in the history of this place.And why these great numbers of voices did not come to the public knowledge?

The answers are simple and many. One that stands out is that these voices are of ordinary laborers, stall holders, shop-owners, house wives and little people of Silibin who struggle with their daily lives and possessing no ability or eloquence of writers like Yin Ee Kiong who had come out to oppose the renaming. DAP has gone to the streets to get their views and such "turun padang" attitude matters most to the ordinary man in the streets and to us.

In any case we are in the process to have a public forum to discuss about this matter and a decision would be taken in due course.

M. Kulasegaran MP Ipoh Barat

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