Wednesday, July 30, 2008

No gifts please

Ever since the election, I have been invited to numerous functions by my constituents. Malaysians love food. Each function I attended, I felt obliged to "eat a little" because the organiser would have gone to great extent in preparing food for us. Many would give souvenirs or a token of appreciation to me for attending their functions. May I say this? I want to be polite here and hopefully not offend anyone - please do not give me gifts. I am no great VIP but a mere people's representative and an ordinary person. Many people still find it hard to believe when I turn up at functions in my own little 4 year old Hyundai Getz. So in view of rising costs, I will just say this openly - don't have to prepare lavish meals and don't have to give me souvenirs, I am happy just attending the function without them.

Lagoon Perdana uncompleted units

Please find below the status update on Lagoon Perdana uncompleted units by the purchasers' representative:
For BLKS 1, 3, & 8 - works are in full swing
Blk 1 & 8 - to be delivered by end Dec 08 /Jan 09
Blk 3 - to be delivered by end of Feb 09/Mac 09
Blk 7 - still waiting on 2nd opinion from the consultant. the first consultant informed to go ahead with progress work but however TGSB/IJMC referred to 2nd consultant

Blk 1 & 8 - work is going on till 9pm
Blk3 - work is progressing well
I'm following up closely for Blk 7, with KPKT, TGSB/IJM, whereby the 2nd opinion should be reverted to them by end of this month

This has been highlighted in the press before. You can read about it here.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Video of State Legislative Assembly 1/2008

For those who missed the first seating of the State Legislative Assembly in May, you can watch the proceedings here.
Please watch it if you want to know what's happening in Selangor, some issues highlighted were given little coverage in the press. Watch how the former chief minister (now the head of opposition) and the entire opposition team in Selangor performed (empty chairs were a common sight at the opposition side).

Malaysians can now watch the proceedings unlike in the past. This is made possible because we believe in transparency and accountability.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Meeting the residents of USJ 11/1A, 1B and 1C

Last weekend, I was invited by the residents of USJ 11/1A, 1B and 1C to their gathering. I like what I saw. They jointly contributed to the gathering.
Policemen were also invited to the dialogue with residents. I explained the current situation with gated and guarded community and I will post a separate article on this later on.
Teenagers also performed a few songs for the older folks while they were enjoying their food. Young and old came together for fellowship. Neighbours of all different races came out of their homes to listen to issues concerning their community. They informed me that ever since they employed guards to watch their streets, crime rate has gone down to zero. I advised the residents to invite the rest of USJ 11/1 to join them and a bigger gathering will be planned to include all residents of USJ 11/1.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Meet Carol Rasiah

Last week my office received a call from Carol Rasiah, a resident of Angsana flats in USJ 1. She informed us that her lift was not working. This caused her inconvenience and difficulty in moving about especially when she needed to purchase groceries from the shops below. My office then contacted the JMB (Joint Management Body) for her block to look into the matter.

Having a light moment with Carol

The JMB for her block did a great job. They discovered that cables were stolen from the lift and they arranged with the maintenance company for the same to be fixed. Within hours, the lift was working again! I paid a visit to Carol and introduced the JMB members to her. I would like to see the JMB paying serious attention to special needs of residents and serving the residents irregardless of race, gender and age. So far, the JMB there is efficient and has a good working relationship with me.

Introducing the JMB to Carol

Carol, despite her physical limitation, is one strong person. She told me during the visit that she would like to participate in teaching the poor students in Angsana when UMNO returns the hall back to the residents. (You can read about the story of the hall here). I have instructed the Land Office to take back the hall for the residents. A letter has been written to UMNO for the return of keys. My political secretary has made a number of calls to the secretary of the Minister for Rural and Regional Development Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib to fix an appointment but no reply from her so far. I don't believe in violence and I want to avoid any untoward incident, hence I have not made any physical attempt to re-possess the hall for the residents. I want things to be done in accordance to the law via the proper channels.

Back to Carol. Her independence, strength and desire to serve others encouraged me. We need more people like Carol around, one who will soar higher than her limitation, rises above to live life to the fullest and serve others around her. I am inspired!

Persiaran Setia

Few days ago I was together with some residents of USJ3A/B/C/D to study the traffic situation along Persiaran Setia. Traffic is almost at a standstill when the students of SMK USJ 12 leave school at 6:50pm.
Cars and buses picking up the students were seen parking along Persiaran Setia up to 4 lanes and leaving only 1 lane for moving cars to pass. This causes an overflow on to Persiaran Tujuan. Students were seen crossing the road indiscreetly.
Following that site visit, I attended a meeting with MPSJ and have been informed that a pedestrian bridge will soon be built for the students. I also met a member of the PIBG and I will make effort to meet with the school authority to see how parents can best pick up their children without causing a crawl.
Piling work for a bridge has also started, linking USJ Heights to USJ3A/B/C/D. The bridge was approved by the previous state government subject to a few conditions to be fulfilled. I have informed MPSJ that the bridge should not be allowed to open if the conditions are not met otherwise this will inevitably add to the already-heavy traffic flow in USJ.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Traffic police at Persiaran Tujuan

The traffic lights turning in to SS19/6 at Persiaran Tujuan has been said to be the cause of the slow crawl at peak hours. I have sought help from the traffic police to man the traffic lights at USJ and the junction at USJ 3 to prevent queue cutters who make things worse on Persiaran Tujuan.

A proposal has been submitted to MPSJ to make some changes to the current situation. The proposal will be decided this week. Traffic situation is one of the toughest tasks for me to undertake especially when development has so rapidly taken place prior to this. Be patient, I'm working on it the best I can with the help of traffic experts, residents, traffic police and MPSJ.

While we await the result, I must thank the traffic policemen who have been seen managing the traffic early morning and in the evening.

The Fairly Current Show

Recently I was invited by The Fairly Current Show to do an interview with them. I was impressed when I met the team. They are a group of young and passionate Malaysians who put their talents together to make this show a success. It's very important to note that they are of different races and they can obviously work very well together.

You can view the interview here.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Updated : A home for the 7 children

For those who are curious as to the future of this family after December 2008 - I've said that we want to provide a headstart for this family. We want to first put the home in place before we help the mother find a job. The father is an odd job worker as well. I have no duty to look for a job for everyone in the constituency but we are talking about 7 children here without basic needs like milk, mattress and pillows. Provision up to December 2008 will give us sufficient time to work out something sustainable for this family.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

A home for the 7 children

Thanks to all who posted comments on my last posting. I didn't expect such overwhelming feedback. By the way, my blog is the only channel I have for expressing my views and frustrations (sometimes) and it is only healthy for me to do that, lest I become an elected rep who is not able to speak up or think for herself. Anyway for those who enjoy my thoughts, thank you for reading.

Just some updates over the weekend - remember the family of 7 children highlighted in my posting entitled 'Enriching lives'? I visited the family again with some committee members of Kiwanis Club of USJ. We discovered that they had a mountain of clothes scattered everywhere in their hall because they do not have a cupboard. The kids sleep on the cold cement floor without mattress or pillows.

I have good news for you. Kiwanis Club of USJ has stepped forward to bless the family with the followings:-
  • a cupboard and dining/study tables
  • mattresses, bedsheets, pillows and blankets
  • a television
  • a stove
  • shelves in the kitchen
  • to renew fluorescent tubes
  • to replace broken windowpanes
  • to replace kitchen utensils
  • to refurbish curtains
  • to wash the mountain of dirty clothes
  • to provide milk for the kids till December 2008
We have managed to convince the mother to stay home and look after her children. Her previous odd job could only give her RM200 a month. I will apply for RM400 monthly till December 2008 from the state funds allocated to help the extreme poor in my constituency for this family of 7 children.

The Kawasan Rukun Tetangga of USJ 2 & 6 have also pledged to provide groceries worth about RM200 a month for the family.

The combined effort of Kiwanis Club of USJ, Kawasan Rukun Tetangga of USJ 2 & 6 and my office is to give this family a headstart in life. Mr JM Noel of Kiwanis Club of USJ said this : Our main concern is to make their house like a HOME. We want the children and their parents to look forward in coming to a home.

I must thank these 2 community groups for stepping forward to assist the community they exist in. They acted promptly when they heard of this. I am very pleased with their compassion for this family.

This is one of the aims I have as the state assemblyman for Subang Jaya. I want to pool resources to help the less fortunate ones in our neighbourhood. We must always love our neighbours the way we love ourselves. I'm glad the 7 children can now have their mother taking care of them. The kids can now have milk instead of just plain water. They will have proper meals. Cold nights on the cement floor are over. The children can now grow up just like the rest of children in Subang Jaya.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Some things I just wouldn't do

My service centre has been operating for about 4 months now. We have received close to more than 300 walk-in complaints (of problems from the past) and more than 3140 emails now. More than 22,000 people voted for me. More than 9000 voted for BN. There are still many hard core BN supporters around. Life hasn't been easy for me.

Many people write threatening emails to me. If I don't reply their emails and solve their problems in 4 days time - they will take it to the press, take it to the cyber forum, tell the whole community why Hannah Yeoh is of no good to the people of Subang Jaya and etc. They have given BN 50 years and only after 50 years they decided to take it to the ballot box. And here, I'm given 4 days or 4 months and I'm expected to move mountains, perform a miracle of instant change and solve everyone's problem in the blink of an eye.

Everyone tells me that their problem is my priority. I only have 24 hours a day, 5 working days a week and have been working non-stop since March 8. Some people come to me asking me for money. They want a personal loan of 10,000 for their business. When I said "I am sorry, I am not able to help you", they would march out of my office, angry and upset with me. This was what they said "No point voted for you, you cannot help me" before storming out of my office.

Another came to complain about the quality of water from Syabas. When my assistant said, please lodge a complaint with Syabas first, they demanded to speak to me even though it was past 10pm that night and they slammed the table in my office, kicked the door and shouted abusive words. We had to inform the police.

Some wanted me to solve their marriage/divorce problems. Some employees wanted me to tell their bosses how to treat them nicely. Some wanted money to service their bank loans and rental. Some wanted me to tell the cabs not to charge them so much. Some wanted me to tell their neighbours not to be so nasty. Some wanted me to see the tree in front of their house, the drains, the parks, the pipes and many more. Some would debate for hours over RM2. Some would argue for the sake of arguing. I cannot look into everyone's personal matters. I have not been elected a wakil keluarga (family rep), wakil kewangan (your financial rep) or your rep at work. I have to look into problems concerning the people at large (wakil rakyat) and ensure these problems are highlighted at the State Assembly. That's the role of an assemblyman. I am sorry, I am not a domestic maid.

Some civil servants be it at MPSJ, Land Office or the police are still upset that BN lost. The hands and legs sometimes do not want to move. I have to repeatedly remind them for things to be done. Classic excuse given to me is this "ADUN masa dulu akan buat dengan cara ini and etc" (the previous ADUN would do it this way and etc). I say it again, I am not the former ADUN. We will change that attitude soon.

I have to explain this to all of you so that the next time you hear someone complaining - no point voted for change, she can't solve my problem - ask further - What is the problem? Personal problem?

Now I understand why it has taken so many years for Malaysia to progress. Attitude is a factor.

I am not here for the power. I am not here to 'play politics' - I don't know how to. I am here genuinely to serve the larger community when I stepped up to the challenge of running for election. Whilst many others have walked away offended and they criticised me for not solving their 'problems', each night I still go to bed praying with a clear conscience (that's if I haven't fallen asleep on the couch). I have not mistreated anyone unfairly, I have not taken a single bribe and I am still doing my best to tackle the problems created by others. When my time is up, if you still think I am no good for the people of Subang Jaya, I will gladly go. I have no problem letting go because I have no strings attached, no contracts made for myself or for others and I will not be a sore loser. I will give a pat for myself (even if no one would) because I know I have done all I could to make Subang Jaya a better place.

But for now, I will keep working and keep fighting to change the mindset of residents. Look at the saying of John F. Kennedy posted above. I may not be able to solve everything in my term but hey I have started working on them. I just need you to know that in my effort to tackle the problems faced by residents at large, there are some things that I just wouldn't do.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Education Ministry's reply on ban

As promised, Tony Pua the Member of Parliament for PJ Utara raised the issue of the ban on Pakatan Rakyat assemblymen and MPs in schools. You can read about it on Tony's blog.

So conveniently the blame has now shifted to the principal of SMKSU. The Education Ministry is using the principal as a scapegoat. This is injustice upon injustice.

A PIBG for a school in USJ has done the exact same thing and the circular was also mentioned to justify the non-invitation.

Parents - you hold the keys of transformation

People have so many different opinions on politicians. Some have bad experiences with politicians and they therefore label all politicians dirty and not trustworthy. It annoys me when people ASSUME the fact that just because I'm a politician hence I am a liar, I can't be trusted and I'm not a good role model.

We need to correct our mindset. Just because one apple is sour, doesn't mean all apples are sour. There are sweet apples. I hope this analogy is simple enough for people to understand.

Parents, you need to understand that you play such a keyrole in the rebuilding of our nation. Do not teach your children that all politicians are dirty. If you do that, you have just denied the nation of a potential leader. Your children will grow up despising politicians, politics and governance. Malaysia needs more untainted young leaders to take the lead in re shaping the nation.

If my parents had said the same to me when I was growing up, I would not be here today. We need more people who would not just speak openly about fighting corruption but people who would fight corruption in every closed door meeting, in every decision they make, in every project discussed, in every application they consider and etc.

We need good sportsmen, artists, doctors and many more but we also need good politicians for young people to follow. If you continue to teach your kids to label all politicians as liars, do not cry out if in years to come, you have no good candidates for election and no one to champion good principles. Do not deter your children from politics, instead, teach them how to assess matters independently, teach them how to resist bribes and teach them to be more proactive in issues concerning the society. Teach them to live selflessly. You never know, your child could just be the future prime minister we need.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Free health screening for residents in SS13 flats

Yesterday my office organised a free health screening for the residents in the SS13 flats at the 3K hall. The program started at 9am and ended at 1pm.

This program was made possible by a volunteer doctor who lives in Subang Jaya. He came to my office right after the election and offered his assistance to serve the people alongside me. His wife, also a doctor joined the team as well. There were young medical graduates from Subang Jaya who were also part of the team.

We provided free random blood sugar and cholesterol test, free blood pressure check, body mass index measurement and height and weight test.

The residents of different races came to do their check-ups and there were some who came to accompany their spouse but were reluctant to do a check-up for themselves. When asked why, they simply replied "I don't want to know because I know the reading will surely be high". Such is the mindset of many Malaysians when it comes to health checks. Look at our eating habits. We can't afford the price of ignorance. Health is priceless. Treasure it and work on it.

There was also a talk on cataract. The senior citizens living there received much from the talk. Remember the senior citizen mentioned in my blog titled "Enriching lives" who has an eye condition? We brought him to see the eye specialist here and I'm pleased to tell you that he will be given a free and thorough check-up by this doctor.

Why did we do this? When I was told that the residents in SS13 flats have been neglected for some 20 years, I decided to step in and assist them. We did a gotong-royong in this place weeks ago and I know a health program would benefit the people. During the campaign period, I told the people that I would look into having a public clinic for the people of Subang Jaya. The nearest public clinics are now in Kelana Jaya and Puchong. While we work on that, we decided to do free health screening first. I want to ensure that the funds allocated for my constituency are put to good use instead of just spending it on dinners! The people should be the rightful recipients.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Anti-dengue campaign is still on!

Tomorrow is Saturday. Please do not forget to spend 10 mins to check the surrounding areas of your house. It is possible to have indoor breeding grounds. I hope there will come a time when residents do not need a reminder such as this one to help battle dengue.

Read more about dengue here. Let's not sit and wait till it becomes an epidemic. MPSJ will continue to do its part. Residents must do their part as well. It only takes 10 mins to save lives.

Threat of HIV/AIDS

I visited the One Life Revolution Exhibition at Dream Centre today with my team members. This experiential exhibition allows me to walk in the shoes of children with HIV/AIDS.

I walked through the life of a young Cambodian girl affected by HIV. She was forced into child prostitution. When I went through the journey of her life, experiencing a HIV positive stamp on my right hand, I could feel the sense of hopelessness for an AIDS victim. Sitting in the clinic alone, being diagnosed with HIV is quite a distressing experience.

Parents, you need to take your teens to this. You can find out more about it here.

So many children have been victims of sexual abuse, prostitution and etc. We, the adults must do all we can to protect children. They are precious gifts from above.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Enriching lives

I spent some time last evening visiting some homes in USJ. Joining me were some caring residents and Mr Yeong, the president of the Kelab Warga Emas in this area. I met a man who's been bedridden for more than 1o years now after an accident. His wife has been looking after him and she works too. He is still in good spirit despite his condition and was able to communicate with me. I know how taxing it is emotionally on a family when a family member is bedridden. My office is now working on assistance from Jabatan Kebajikan for them.

I also met a senior citizen who has an eye condition and is in need of medical treatment.

The last home I visited shocked me. Both parents are odd job workers and they have 7 children. When they're at work, their younger kids are left to be attended to by their older children. The youngest is only slightly more than a year old. When I saw the youngest child drinking from a jar, I asked them what he was drinking and they told me that he's drinking water only. I was also told that they have stopped drinking milk for some time because they cannot afford it. Neighbours told me that they have seen the kids drinking from the bathroom before. One child has skin illness while another had a cut on his ear while playing. They only eat porridge at night. Neighbours of different races often helped this family, sometimes by purchasing cooking gas for them. When my assistants heard this, they rushed down to the mini market and quickly bought some bread and ice-cream for the kids. You should have seen the joy on their faces when they ate the ice-cream! My assistant said this to me before we left that place "I know we've had tough times serving people but when I see conditions like this one, I am glad I have the privilege of helping the poor".

We are making urgent arrangement to help this family. Different groups of residents have offered assistance. It is sufficient for now. With the price increase in almost everything, life can only be tougher for these poor families. I am highlighting this to create more awareness that poverty exists in our neighbourhood. I know some may argue that there will always be the poor around but I want to minimise that in my term as a state assemblyman. There are residents who cannot see anything beyond their own backyard. I am glad that there are still many caring Malaysians around. When I shared this with my family during our family dinner last night, my dad said "you have chosen this path to serve the country" and I know I'm blessed with this position to enrich poor lives and not my own. I am of the opinion that politicians and other people of great influence should use their position only to enrich the less fortunate ones and not the pockets of some. Some may think that I am an idealist and live in a naive world of my own. I am not! I stand firm that this is how it ought to be.

The next time you enjoy a cup of ice-cream, give thanks because to some, it is a luxury.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Lady Survival Skills

Last Saturday, I attended a Lady Survival Skills seminar organised by Community@Heart in Sunway. This event was attended by more than 300 ladies. In my speech, I encouraged the ladies to be more proactive in their community. I reminded them of the consequences of being ignorant, whether it concerns safety, politics or others.

We were given a lot of practical tips on safety issues. I personally find this program very helpful and I want to see more activities like this in my constituency. I told the ladies I understand how it feels to be a victim of crime because I was once a victim of snatch theft too. I am well aware of the security issues in Subang Jaya and I am working on ways to fight crime together with the police and residents.

Monday, July 7, 2008


Last weekend was hectic for me. One of the much awaited event was the SMKSU prefects' reunion. When my husband and I arrived, we were kept busy with photography session with the prefects. Teachers and parents were present too.

I was asked to give a speech. In my speech, I thanked the people who stood up for me and made it possible for me to attend the event. To SY the organising chairperson - I'm so proud of you. Your courage to stand by me and to uphold justice is remarkable. For me to be able to inspire just one more young person like her to speak up fearlessly is enough for me. Many thanks to residents, parents and fellow comrades who took the same stand. The outpouring of supporting emails were simply overwhelming.

I felt a little emotional when I saw the slideshow of pictures from the past. Since I left school, I have attended the funeral of my discipline teacher the late Mr Lim Cho Hong who taught me not to give up even though my SPM results were not superb. He wrote these words in my school magazine "The best is yet to come!". Last year, I also attended the funeral of my junior prefect. He passed away suddenly after a game of sports. When I saw his photo up on the screen, I remembered the times spent with him in school.

In my speech, I also briefed the prefects of the history of the prefects' theme TERBAIK and the prefects' song which was written about 13 years ago (when I was only 16). I didn't know that the little vision I had for the prefects then would last for more than a decade.

I hope to see the same with the principles I'm upholding now. In the future, even after I'm gone, hopefully our future leaders would be people of truth and righteousness. I want to leave behind a similar trail someday, like the one I did in school.

Guess who?

Guess who I met at Kelana Jaya today?

With Raja Petra and my husband, Ram

He doesn't need further introduction. We had a very brief chat and he told me that he's a voter in my constituency. Having a constituent with one of the most influential pair of eyes and voice in our country today definitely helps in keeping me effective as a state assemblyman.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Ask not what Subang Jaya can do for you - ask what you can do for Subang Jaya

Last weekend we had a massive gotong-royong at the flats in SS13. This area is one of the older areas in Subang Jaya.

This gotong-royong was organised by my office after I received complaints from the residents there. The residents said that since moving there for the last 20 years, they have never been visited by their ADUN or MP until now.

This gotong-royong would not have been successful without the effort of a few parties. The residents themselves came out to assist in the cleaning. I was most impressed by the willingness of the Latter Rain church who sent at least 50 of their members to be the hands and legs for this gotong-royong. MPSJ also sent their trucks and manpower. Konsortium SJ Pest Control offered their free service for that day in solving the rats problem.

I saw a young girl aged 8 sweeping the compound of the flats together with her dad. Children of different races came out to work together. The volunteers do not live in this area but they took time out to assist others. They care for their neighbours' backyard as much as they do for their own. This attitude is what we need to move the community forward.

I have heard this statement from a number of people I met "Are you Hannah Yeoh? I voted for you and now I'm watching what you can do for me!". This statement irks me the most. Notice the word used is watching. This group of people only sit back and watch while others work. I have seen this in some residents' meeting. The committee members worked hard while some others sat back to watch and complain.

The volunteers for the gotong-royong came to my office asking "What can we do to help you and the community?". They didn't just sit back and watch the progress of the nation after the March 8 election. This group of people understand that their votes were not for Hannah Yeoh but for their own future.

As a young person, I did not just sit and complain of the previous government, I decided to do something about it and today I am serving the people, carrying the weight of rebuilding and reforming the community. Malaysia needs proactive watchmen to ensure good governance and not watchmen who merely sit back and complain. We will accomplish more if everyone works together.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Know your neighbours

Last weekend, I was invited by a group of residents in SS19/1F to join them for their monthly gathering. When I arrived, I was impressed by what I saw. I was told that once a month, the neighbours would gather and spend time getting to know each other. Each house takes turn to host the monthly gathering.

Neighbours of different races came and everyone contributed food and drinks. Their children mingled together. The women each contributed food which represented their different cultures. I saw unity. I saw the ideal Malaysia. I saw what every neighbourhood in Subang Jaya ought to be. I know it's possible for Malaysia to be free of racial politics. I saw this in SS19/1F.