Press Statement by YB Kelvin Yii:
I am appalled by the ignorance showed by SUPP/GPS on the continuous efforts and work done by the Federal Government and agencies in collaboration with the State Disaster Management Committee to address the current haze situation.
The statement by SUPP Milton Foo claiming that there is no assistance for the haze in Sarawak from the Federal Government speaks not only of his ignorance of the whole thing and his deliberate attempt to mislead the people, but also an insult to all the sacrifice and hard work put into by officers from the Federal Government and agencies that has worked hard since day one year after year to address this issue.
This Federal Agencies includes our firefighters from the Fire Rescue Department which has been battling with the tough conditions to put out peat fires all across Sarawak, officers from the Metereological Department(MetMalaysia) and Royal Malaysian Airforce(RMAF) which are mainly responsible for the cloud- seeding done not just in Sarawak, but all around Malaysia, as well as many more other federal officers including the Civil Defence Force(APAM), the National Disaster Management Agency(NADMA), the Royal Malaysian Police and also the Ministry of Health which put high alert on the increase of patients facing any health complaints due to the haze.
So far, there are 4 cloud seeding efforts that was done by MetMalaysia, RMAF, Kuching Water Board, NADMA and APAM with the latest done on the 20th of September 2019 covering areas around Kuching, Samarahan, Serian, Sri Aman, Betong, Sarawak, Sarikei, Kanowit, Mukah, and Lundu. This is more operations than other parts of Malaysia and all these efforts including cost of using the Bombardier CL-415 to put off peat fires from the sky are mainly covered by the Federal Government.
Due to the collaberative efforts of the Federal Government and also the State Disaster Management Committee, the API in some places especially Sri Aman has decreased from 400+ (20th September) to 122( 21st Sept 11,15am). Cloud-seeding efforts will be continued when needed and fire control and monitoring on the ground will be continued further.
On top of that, to properly address this issue on a long term, the federal government is preparing stricter laws against companies that that do open burning and contribute to the haze including consulting with the Attorney General Chambers in drafting a Transboundary Haze Act that will enforce against open burning even in neighbouring countries. An official tele-conference between the Secretary General of ASEAN in Jakarta has been arranged to put forward relevant laws to address this issue that could be enforced among all the member countries of ASEAN.
So the deliberate attempt by SUPP to play politics and use this current haze for their own political agenda just exposes their ignorance on the matter. We all play a part to take the necessary precautions during this season and also we send the highest appreciation to all the officers and government agencies, from the Federal and the State for all their sacrifices and hard work to put their lives on the line to keep us safe and to better address this problem.
Kelvin Yii Lee Wuen
MP for Bandar Kuching