Friday, July 10

Release names of people not welcome in Sarawak online, Dr Ting urges state government


Dr Ting Tiong Choon

MIRI: A DAP assemblyman has suggested that the Sarawak government publish online the names of people who have been barred from entering the state after a Peninsular Malaysian activist was stopped at the Kuching International Airport (KIA) last week.

Pujut assemblyman Dr Ting Tiong Choon said today that the list of restricted persons should be available to the public so that people could check if they were allowed into the state instead of finding out when they had already arrived at the entry points.

Urging the government not to abuse the state’s immigration autonomy, he said the treatment of Electoral Reform Committee (ERC) member Prof Dr Wong Chin Huat at KIA last Thursday was inhumane and unacceptable.

“Wong was neither causing danger to society nor an extremist in any magnitude,” he said, adding that the Sarawak government should clarify why Wong was denied entry.

Dr Ting claimed that the Gabungan Parti Sarawak government was playing politics and wrongfully using state’s immigration powers to bar people from entering Sarawak.

Wong had yesterday also asked the state government why he was allowed to enter the state in August for an ERC programme but not last Thursday, even with two letters from the committee to explain that he was attending a workshop here.

He said the state government must explain to the public what changed over the span of three months or what in the said workshop made his entry this time threatening.

The activist, who arrived at 3.50pm, was only allowed to enter the state at 9.45pm in order to seek medical treatment at the Sarawak General Hospital, where he was admitted overnight.

Wong said at about 7pm, he had developed a severe headache and his blood pressure had spiked.

Dr Ting said it was it is the basic human right for anyone to receive medical assistance if and when the need arises.

“Fortunately nothing untoward happened with his medical condition. It could be a medical emergency with his excessively hypertension reading,” he said.