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Press Statement by Hiew King Cheu in Kota Kinabalu on Saturday, 4 thJuly 2009:

Angry Sabahan wanted normal and steady power supply, BN government be responsible

Sabah DAP had received many angry complaints from the angry power consumers all over Sabah, especially those from the urban areas. The frequent and long hours of power cuts are seriously affecting the lively hood and daily production of the people in Sabah. The anger is growing day by day, especially there is no sign of the SESB and the government giving the power consumers assurance on when will the situation can improved or permanent solved.

The affected areas are ranging from the general house holds, schools, industries, commercial, and even hospitals. The losses are uncountable, and there is billion of ringgit lost over the many months of power cuts. To the general consumers, it is not only the money losses incurred, but sometimes can be as fatal as live lost and serious injuries in situation of no traffic light car accident. The school children can not do their home work due the no electricity at night. The house wife can not prepare meals, and the whole family had to eat out, and spending more money. The electrical appliances damaged due to unsteady power supply and heavy power surge. Is it the way that we have to live nowadays?

The present Sabah total power requirement is around 750 MW which is equivalent to the total production output by all the power generators in Sabah. If deducted the low efficiencies due to the old age of most of the power plants, we actually are getting less than 600 MW. The situation will be worst, if some of these power plants have breakdown or total shut down, then we are very short of power supply in the whole state. At the moment, the Tenom Panggi hydro-power station is still under repair, with one more power generator still not functioning. SESB said some private IPP power station had breakdown and needed time to put back on service, and the present power supply in the State is already gone down to as low as 500 MW. These caused the wide spread of power-shedding and cuts throughout the state. The announcement to upgrade and build new power plant remains as something in the future, in Sabah we continue to suffer everyday.

Dr. Hiew, the Kota Kinabalu MP says that since the BN government took over the government in 1994 from the PBS state government, they promised that the power problem in Sabah shall be solved, but now after 15 years “in power”, there is no sign of power improvement, but instead the situation is becoming even serious. We actually can see that the BN had totally failed in their promises, or may be they had forgotten about the Sabahan. The ministers might not suffer as we are, may be they all have big power generators at home or in their offices supplied by the government. That is why the SESB is calling the people to start using your own power generator at home and in your factories. A reminder, you need special permits from SESB under the law to operate power generators in your premises. You can be fine heavily if you are caught without a license.

The people in Sabah want the government to bear full responsibility and be answerable to the suffering of the Sabahan. The Chief Minister, Datuk Musa Aman and his whole cabinet must resign on the reason that they had failed to provide the basic power supply to the people. If the simple task of providing steady electricity supply to the Sabah consumer can not be achieved, what else the BN government can do for us? The anger and frustration are growing day by day, and the people said they had enough. The widely publicized Sabah Development Corridor remains as a BN political publicity gimmick. With the poor, insufficient and unstable electricity supply, we don’t see that the so call development projects or corridor can make any advancement.

* Dr. Hiew King Cheu, MP for Kota Kinabalu



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