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Monday, January 15, 2007

Why Has an Emergency Not Been Declared?

The news on the floods is most devastating - TV3 announced at midnight that more than 100000 people are being given shelter in relief centres.

I drove to KL on Saturday morning and it rained all the way to near Air Keroh and in some places we could see land and buildings that was covered with water.

I drove back on Sunday afternoon and the situation had become worse. Although there was little rain en route in one particular area just south of the Pagoh rest stop the bridge is under threat and this will mean the closure of the highway here if the raging waters continue.

There were some PLUS officials at the site at about 6pm but looking at what had been prepared against the torrents I do not place much hope on them being able to save this bridge.

There seems to be a cavalier air about how the national leaders have handled the flood crisis. Both the PM and DPM were out of the country and it appears there is a lack of positive direction.

The leadership shown has been disappointing to most of the flood victims.
There have already been reports of looting and rescuers asking money from the victims.

It is not necessary to declare a national emergency but surely an emergency is necessary for the most affected areas like Batu Pahat and Kota Tinggi.

An emergency will allow the authorities to control the situation better and all unauthorised persons will not be allowed to exploit the situation. Any resident who wants to return home may be allowed subject to stringent controls.

The other aspect that is worrying is that appeals of aid have been made and some firms and individuals have donated generously to the victims. What measures are being taken to ensure that the aid actually goes to the victims?

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