MCC’s 7-day meeting notice ‘double standard’ — DAP

MIRI: The Democratic Action Party (DAP) is bringing the issue of the seven-day notice, which is required from those who want to attend any of Miri City Council (MCC) meeting, to court for judicial review.

DAP Sarawak secretary Alan Ling Sie Kiong views the regulation imposed by MCC as being ‘double standard’, adding that the council should be open and transparent to the public as of the right stated under the Local Authority Ordinance 1996, Section 21 (6).

“The DAP is studying the case. It (MCC) is the first local council that sets up this law in Sarawak.

“Previous mayors in Miri had never set such guidelines, neither had other local councils in the state. It seems like the council is targeting the opposition, which wishes to send its representatives to the council meetings.

“The new regulation seems to block opposition representatives from attending the meeting and also to not make known the decision made during such meeting to the public,” he told reporters at DAP office here yesterday.

According to Ling, the people come to the council meeting ‘not for the food’, but to know more about the progress of projects implemented by MCC.

“It is also the best venue for the council to show its performance to the public, as far as development and implementation of projects are concerned.

“It is a pity that the new mayor, being in office for less than two years, is making the rules more difficult for the public,” he added.

Meanwhile, Pujut assemblyman Dr Ting Tiong Choon stressed that it is crucial for the government to ensure that the contractors must abide by the labour law, especially those concerning wages, before awarding them with any project tender.

He disclosed that he interviewed daily workers working for the contractors engaged by the council, who told him that they were being paid between RM31 and RM33 per day (12-hour shift) for those working as cleaners, and RM25 per day (12-hour shift) for those working as security personnel.

“There are hundreds of these workers. The government has to be responsible in ensuring that they would not become victims of exploitation by the contractors.” he pointed out, adding that the minimum wage for Sabah and Sarawak is RM920 per month, while the daily wage is between RM35 and RM38.

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