Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Do Away With Exemption of Liability Letter - Press Statement


Terlebih dahulu saya ingin mengucapkan takziah kepada keluarga mangsa kemalangan di Kampar, iaitu keluarga adik, N. Dina Deve, V. Divyasree dan M. Davadharshini.

Kehilangan seorang anak tidak dapat diganti dengan walau sebanyak mana wang pun. Malah apa yang kita lakukan selepas ini tidak akan mengembalikan nyawa mereka. Apa yang kita boleh perolehi adalah keinsafan dan pengajaran daripada insiden ini.


Saya menyeru kepada Kementerian Pelajaran Malaysia supaya memansuhkan amalan meminta ibu-bapa menandatangani Surat Pelepasan Tanggungan bagi aktiviti-aktiviti luar sekolah yang diwajibkan murid hadir. Adalah menjadi satu amalan biasa bagi sekolah-sekolah meminta ibu-bapa menandatangani Surat Pelepasan Tanggungan bagi aktiviti-aktiviti luar sekolah.Amalan ini boleh diterima bagi aktiviti dimana ibu-bapa mempunyai pilihan untuk samada menghantar anak-anak mereka atau tidak, tetapi amalan ini tidak boleh diterima dimana aktiviti tersebut diwajibkan hadir oleh pihak sekolah mahupun pihak Kementerian Pelajaran.

‘Standard’ atau piawaian keselamatan dan tanggungjawab bagi aktiviti-aktiviti luar sekolah yang wajib mestilah piawaian yang sama dengan semasa murid-murid berada di sekolah.

Pemansuhan Surat Pelepasan Tanggungan bagi aktiviti wajib akan memastikan kesemua pihak memberi lebih penumpuan kepada aspek keselamatan serta menimbang segala risiko sebelum membawa kanak-kanak kita ke mana-mana aktiviti luar sekolah.

Saya tidak menyalahkan mana-mana pihak tetapi ingin memastikan sistem kita lebih diperkemaskini sebelum lebih ramai nyawa terhilang.

Isu Kedua

Saya juga menyeru kepada semua pihak supaya berhenti menyalahkan kanak-kanak yang terlibat di dalam insiden tersebut. Ada lapuran yang menyatakan bahawa di antara faktor penyumbang keruntuhan jejantas itu adalah disebabkan kanak-kanak melompat dan bermain di atas jejantas. Kanak-kanak akan sentiasa bersikap kebudak-budakan. Faktor ini harus diambilkira apabila mana-mana pihak menganjurkan aktiviti luaran bagi kanak-kanak dan harus mengambil langkah berjaga-jaga.

Banyak persoalan timbul dari satu insiden ini. Sebagai contoh, kenapa kanak-kanak diminta merintasi jejantas di waktu malam, mengapa S.O.P yang mengkehendaki kanak-kanak menggunakan ‘life-jacket’ bagi aktiviti yang melibatkan air tidak disediakan, adakah pihak sekolah mengambil insurans bagi aktiviti luaran ini sebagaimana yang dikehendaki oleh garis-panduan kerajaan bagi aktiviti luaran wajib dan kenapa kanak-kanak darjah lima yang tidak seharusnya menyertai aktiviti ini diminta untuk hadir semata-mata untuk memenuhi bilangan murid?

Isu Ketiga

Saya juga ingin, diwaktu ini menyeru kepada pihak-pihak berkuasa tempatan memastikan bahawa taman-taman tema permainan (‘theme parks’) terutamanya taman-taman tema permainan sementara mengamalkan langkah-langkah keselamatan yang secukupnya di setiap masa. Pemeriksaan harus dilakukan dari masa ke semasa untuk memastikan operator-operator taman-taman tema ini memberi keutamaan kepada keselamatan pada setiap masa. Kita tidak perlu satu insiden di taman-taman tema sebelum kita mengambil langkah berjaga-jaga.

Sekian. Terima kasih.

Murugesan Sinnandavar

Setiausaha Agung MIC

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Kampar Tragedy

2009/10/27 - NST Online

The search and rescue operation following the collapse of a suspension bridge across the Kampar River at a school in Kuala Dipang near here has been extended 15 kilometres downriver.

Kampar police chief Supt Abdul Aziz Salleh said the rescuers were looking for two primary schoolgirls who went missing after the bridge collapsed at 10.30pm last night as pupils participating in a camp were crossing it.

The two pupils have been identified as Diryasree a/p Vasudevan, 12, of Sekolah RendahKebangsaan Tamil (SJKT) Gopeng and Davadharshini a/p Maheswaran, 11, of SJKT Mambang Di Awan near here.

Another schoolgirl of SJKT Mambang Di Awan, Dina Deve a/p Nathan, 11, drowned in the incident. Her body was recovered from the river at 8.40am today.

Abdul Aziz said the Kampar River was swift-flowing but the rescuers would continue with their search until they found the two girls.

Source - NST Online

I visited the families of Dina Deve a/p Nathan and Davadharshini a/p Maheswaran last night. Initially I was reluctant to go because at times like this, visiting politicians are more of a nuisance then help.

What could I possibly do or say to the devastated parents that could alleviate their pain or bring any sort of comfort? After much thought, I decided to go; as a person and a father.

I remember being comforted by the presence of friends and well-wishers, even strangers, when I lost my mum.

It was raining when we visited Dina Deve's house. And there was a blackout. It was a reflection of how all of us felt inside; dark and suffocated.

A child in a coffin ... words just can't describe the sorrow of it. And yet she looked serene, just like she was sleeping.

The parents of Davadharshini were inconsolable. Davadharshini was still missing at the time of the visit. One is at a loss as to whether to offer words of comfort or to brace them for the worst.

In a tragedy like this, a string of human errors or negligence must have occurred before mother nature took its toll.

We paid it with the lives of someone's children.

I am sure all parties, irrespective of their political affiliations do not want to see the repeat this incident under a different name, at a different time and a different place.

Today it is the daughters of Vasudevan, Maheswaran and Nathan. Tomorrow it could be your or my child.

Lets do what is right.

Lets not take safety and safety measures for granted. Lets stop cutting corners and take the easy way out. Lets pay heed to mother nature and her warnings.

Let the finger-pointing wait.

For now, lets join in prayers for Dina Deve, Davadharshini, Diryasree and their families. Lets be thankful for the brave security guard that pulled many children out of the river and other unnamed heroes like him.

Murugesan Sinnandavar

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Secretary General of MIC

My Dear Friends,

My heartfelt thanks to everyone for the out-pouring congratulatory messages and well wishes.

It is an unexpected appointment coming at a crucial time.What we do in the next three years will determine the very future of the party.

I have no illusions about the task at hand and the expectation that has been placed on this new team.

We have a young and vibrant team in place. The Deputy President , Dato G. Palanivel was re-elected based on his track record and to ensure smooth transition.

We have three new and very able Vice-Presidents in YB Dato Dr S. Subramaniam, YB Dato SK Devamani and YB Dato M. Saravanan. All three are down to earth leaders.

Both the Treasurer General, Dato Jaspal Singh and the Information Chief, Mr P.Kamalanathan are youthful, reliable and have the capacity to deliver.

Five state chairmen lost their contest for the Central Working Committee post. The state chairmen performed well in their duties but the delegates just wanted change. They wanted to give the young candidates a chance. Most of the top ten candidates were below 45. There are now 16 new faces out 23 elected CWC Members. Change has come to MIC.

My first task will be to ensure the infusion of new, especially young members, into MIC through the existing branches. We have to reconnect with the young voters.

We are ready to put in the hard work and are sincere in our efforts. Judge us in time, not now.

I pray God be with us and we be with you, for without you, we are nothing.

For my muslim friends, "Selamat Hari Raya. Maaf Zahir Batin."

Murugesan Sinnandavar

Monday, April 27, 2009

Tekun Loan

Calling all Young Entrepreneurs,

Application Forms for 'Tekun' Loan is now available at:

Yayasan Strategik Sosial (YSS)
Tingkat 5, Menara Manickavasagam
No 1, Jalan Rahmat
50350 Kuala Lumpur
Phone: 6-03-4041 5958 (Mr Nareen)
Fax: 6-03-4041 5681
Email: enquiries@yss98.com

YSS will also be holding workshops every Wednesday from 10.00 am to 1.00pm at its office to brief applicants on how to apply and how to fill up the forms.

Closing Date : 15th June, 2009

Thank you.

Murugesan Sinnandavar

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Perak Oh Perak

Hardly a week passes by without a politically explosive news hitting the headlines.

The previous week was about the death of A.Kugan in police custody. Last week it was about the Bota assemblyman Datuk Nasaruddin Hashim jumping ship from BN to Pakatan.

This week is all about Changkat Jering assemblyman Mohd Osman Mohd Jailu and Behrang Assemblyman Jamaluddin Mohd Radzi.

They were both declared to have vacated their seats by the Perak Speaker V. Sivakumar, only to be denied by the two involved. They have both now declared themselves as independents. The Election Commission has declined to declare both seats as vacant. No by-elections. In the meantime DAP has given the EC 48 hours to rescind its decision.

The drama is still unfolding as I am writing this. We do not know what is going to happen today or in the next few days. Rumours are going around that there will be more defection, that Pakatan will ask for a dissolution of the Perak state assembly, that BN will form a new state government with more 'defectors' joining its fold etc, etc.

What have we descended into? I still remember clearly the day George W. Bush was declared the winner of the 2000 Presidential Election by the narrowest of margin. Although Al Gore received the majority of popular votes, he abided by the wishes of the people as translated by the system. George W. Bush's authority as President nor his right to rule were never once challenged by the margin of his victory (of course the fact that he was one of the worst US President in living memory is another matter).

Recently, when John McCain, a decorated war hero lost to a ' newcomer' Barrack Hussein Obama, he called all Americans to come together to work with the new President. He said "he is President of the United Sates, he is my President". That is the integrity of those that uphold the system and respect the wishes of the people.

Unfortunately, we in Malaysia have succumbed to the low level of politics seen in the less developed third world countries where party-hopping is the norm and the will of the people is twisted through back-door negotiations.

I am strongly against party-hopping and believe that every elected representative must stand in the ticket he was voted in. Alternatively, he should vacate his seat and seek a fresh mandate if he is unable to see eye to eye with his party. The will of the people expressed through the ballot must be respected by all, regardless of the margin of victory. That is the system. And everyone should abide by it, not only when it is convenient. In the long run, it benefits everyone.

However, the present state of confusion and uncertainty in Perak has been brought upon itself by PKR. Anwar started the ball rolling (and much to the excitement of his supporters who saw him as the 'saviour' of democracy in Malaysia) by declaring that he would form a new Federal government through defection of BN MPs by 16th September, 2008. Nothing came out of it except that Pakatan lost its moral high ground.

Last week Pakatan shot shot itself in the foot when it gleefully accepted Datuk Nasaruddin's defection to Pakatan. No questions asked about whether the voters voted for him or the party he represented. No calls for a fresh mandate.

What goes around comes around. Now Pakatan's Perak government is hanging by a thread. It can't object based on principles as it had none to begin with.

At least PAS and DAP had the sense of fair play when they decided not to be too carried away with Anwar's promise of a new government through defection. BN had the good sense not to 'entice' PAS assemblymen in Kelantan to defect when PAS held that state by a single majority between 2004-2008. That's fair play.

Anyway, the global economic meltdown has begun to wash on our shores. Some have just received their notice of termination. Many more will get theirs as factories close and companies cut back on their operations.

Many families will lose their home due to foreclosures and banks will collapse. Some banks and companies inevitably will be rescued with tax-payers money.

We need a steady captain in the form of a strong government to weather this storm. And everyone must do their part to see through the difficult times ahead. This needs concentrated and concerted effort. We can't do it if we are too busy politicking and pulling the rug under each other's feet.

Lets focus as a nation on how best to overcome the current economic turmoil. Lets play by the rules and let politics work itself out. Thank you.

Murugesan Sinnandavar