Parliament website a continuing disgrace to Parliament and the nation’s ICT aspirations
by Lim Kit Siang
(Petaling Jaya, Monday): The Parliament website is a continuing disgrace to Parliament and the nation’s information communications technology aspirations.
The Parliament homepage server was shut down after office hours on Friday making the Parliament homepage unavailable during the weekend. I checked at 7.10 a.m. this morning and it was still down, but when I checked at 8.10 a.m., the Parliament homepage was up and running.
Parlament homepage claims the dubious honour of being the only website, not only in the country but in the world, which spurns the 24/7 concept of cyberspace of being accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year – by being strictly bound to the five-day work-week, shutting down during the weekends.
This is not the first weekend that it has happened, for I have always found the Parliament homepage unavailable during the weekends in the past several months when I tried to access it.
In the recent weekend, I had wanted to access the only useful feature on the Parliament homepage – the Hansards or the Parliamentary verbatim reports – to check on the parliamentary debate on the Housing Development (Control and Licensing) Bill 2001 on Oct. 11, 15 and 16, 2001. My purpose was to find out how the Minister for Housing and Local Government, Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting could have made such a colossal blunder in a social legislation to provide a measure of protection to the small-time house-buyers in their long and uneven battle against the powerful, wealthy, unscrupulous and unprincipled housing developers as to expose tens of thousands of house-buyers to losses as high as RM250 million following the Kuala Lumpur High Court judgment last Thursday striking down the jurisdiction of the Tribunal for Homebuyer Claims to adjudicate disputes over property bought before December 1 last year
It is a crying shame that despite years of public complaint about the disgraceful parliament website, whether in concept or content, nothing had been done to make it a homepage which can make MPs or ordinary Malaysians proud while RM50 million could be lavished and wasted on making Parliament House look grand and stately!
When are the Parliamentarians going to bestir themselves to ensure that the Parliament homepage stop being a disgrace to Parliament and the nation?
* Lim Kit Siang, DAP National Chairman