Thursday, March 13, 2008


Native Chief Rep overcome by poll campaign exhaustion


Karambunai Native Chief Representative Awang Laiman Duraman was hospitalized after facing breathing difficulties, believed to be caused by hyper exhaustion after taking part in the recent general election campaign for the Barisan Nasional. The 50-year-old senior member of the Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP), was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the Sabah Medical Hospital in Likas after complaining of breathing difficulties and fainted last week. Karambunai Assemblywoman Jainab Ahmad in disclosing this yesterday, said that despite having bad health condition, the Native Chief Representative who is a diabetic, actively took part in the BN election machinery activities to ensure the party win last Saturday’s election. “He is very committed to the BN’s struggle. His loyalty to the party as shown through his willingness to go to the ground and mobilize the election machinery even when he was not feeling well ought to be commended and appreciated,” said Jainab who visited Laiman at the hospital on Tuesday. Jainab who retained the Karambunai state seat after beating Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) candidate Awang Maidin Awang Apong in the 12th General Election last week, thanked Laiman and others who played an active role in ensuring the BN victory. She also thanked the constituents for giving her the mandate to represent the area for the second term and vowed to continue giving her best to serve the people. “This victory is not for me or BN but for everyone,” said Jainab, adding the people had made the right choice by allowing the BN to continue implementing the development agendas it had set for the constituency and the State. She said in addition to the development plans currently being implemented, there are still many things that need to be done to further develop the area and improve the livelihood of its residents. Among the development programmes that will be given priority are providing houses for those still living in squatter colonies, improving the drainage system, upgrading village roads and repairing old jetties used by local fishermen. “Many people are still squattering on Government and private land and we will try to provide and get them to move to proper houses. The squatter colonies have been a long-standing issue and difficult to solve. We want this to end,” she said. She stressed that squatter colonies are linked to various social and environmental issues and given the close proximity. of the constituency to the city centre, the problem need to be resolved immediately to prevent it from continuing to tarnish the image of the State. At the meantime, she said effort would be carried out to prevent more squatter houses from being built in the area. On the drainage improvement, she said her office is working closely with the Drainage and Irrigation Department to develop a better system to overcome the frequent flooding in Karambunai. “Apart from that we have asked for cooperation from developers undertaking development projects in this constituency to adopt safer and responsible approaches to prevent flash floods from occurring,” she said.