Community leaders prefer Resident Office to manage them

Pemanca Wilson Siang

MIRI: Iban community leaders here welcome the suggestion that longhouse chiefs and community leaders in the state be managed by the Resident Office and not by the people’s representatives.

Pemanca Wilson Siang said it would be better if they were supervised by the Resident Office rahter than the present system which gives elected representatives the power to ‘control’ them.

“Sometimes, the wakil rakyat did not even ask for the views of Penghulu or Pemanca who spend more time working together with headmen and longhouse chiefs.

“For example, the renewal of services for some longhouse chiefs was made without taking into account their performance. By right, their services should only be renewed if he or she performed well in their last term,” Wilson said when contacted yesterday.

Therefore, he applauded the longhouse chiefs and community leaders’ suggestion to be managed by the Resident Office.

“All community leaders and longhouse chiefs should be evaluated using key performance index (KPI), which is monitored by the Resident Office.

“Through this system, it will be easier to know if the person is discharging his or her duty responsibly, or if they have ever reported to the office,” he said.

Wilson was commenting on a statement made by Minister of Utility Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi on Aug 11, that the state government is looking to see if the qualification of longhouse and village chiefs can be standardised by the Resident Office.

Wilson added that the state government was also looking at ways to identify the qualification of longhouse chiefs, including their ability to read and write.

He said if the proposed system were put to use, the Resident Office should also ensure that they collaborate with active panel members so that the system could run smoothly.

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