SIBU (June 11): Wong Ching Yong has vowed to continue tirelessly striving to improve the healthcare facilities in Sibu despite being ridiculed by some folk here.
Wong, who contested as Gabungan Parti Sarawak’s (GPS) candidate for Lanang constituency in the 15th general election (GE15), assured the people that he will not give up on his goal so long as long as he is the deputy chairman of Sibu Rural District Council (SRDC) and chairman of Sarawak United People’s party (SUPP) Dudong Branch.
“Although I did not become a member of parliament in the last general election, I will not give up on my goal of building the heart and cancer centres in Sibu.
“I remember during the election period when I proposed the plans for these two medical centres, many people unanimously agreed that the people of Sibu had waited for far too long and expressed disappointment that the incumbent members of parliament for over 10 years had not brought about such important projects.
“Some people teased me for continuing to fight even after losing the election. However, if I can bring about the development of these two life-saving facilities for Sibu, I am willing to humble myself and endure any ridicule.
“As (the former British prime minister, Sir) Winston Churchill said: “Never, never, never, never give up”. Similarly, I will continue to strive to improve the healthcare facilities in Sibu tirelessly as long as I am still the deputy chairman of SRDC and chairman of SUPP Dudong Branch,” he said at SUPP Dudong branch women section’s Parents Day celebration dinner here last night.”
In GE15, Wong failed to unseat Alice Lau of the Democratic Action Party (DAP), who managed to retain the Lanang seat in a four-cornered fight with a majority of 11,544 votes.
Lau garnered 30,120 votes to beat Wong who garnered 18,576 votes, while Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB) Priscilla Lau 3,663 votes. Independent Dato Wong Tiing Kiong got 587 votes.
Wong expressed gratitude to Deputy Premier and SUPP president Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian, who managed to persuade Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to immediately announce an allocation of RM305 million for the construction of a cancer centre in Sarawak during his recent visit to the state.
“Due to the long-standing lack of cancer medical facilities in the central region of Sarawak, and with Kuching already having a well-established heart centre, as soon as I heard about Anwar’s allocation, I immediately requested that the Sarawak Cancer Centre be established in Sibu.
“If, in the end, the Sarawak Cancer Centre is still established in Kuching, I hope that this allocation from the federal government can be allocated in part to Sibu, so that at least a satellite cancer center can be built here to provide some level of treatment for patients.
“I believe that all the filial sons and daughters present here not only care about your parents’ daily lives and meals but also attach great importance to your parents’ healthcare needs. Providing proper medical facilities to the people is undoubtedly the duty of elected representatives,” he said.
Turning to Lau and Sibu MP Oscar Ling, Wong asked them as to why Sibu folk haven’t heard anything about the Sibu Heart Centre and Cancer Centre during their tenure as MPs?
“Can’t they see the people’s urgent needs? The absence of these two major medical centres means that more patients and their families will continue to endure multiple pressures while fighting against illness and facing the inconvenience or even risks associated with traveling long distances for medical treatment,” he said.
Wong said both Lau and Ling have served for more than a decade in their respective positions and with their status as MPs of the ruling party, it grants them a considerably larger scope to make meaningful contributions.
“It is expected that they have made substantial efforts and achieved notable accomplishments, particularly in addressing longstanding issues and urgent concerns that affect the welfare of the people in Sibu. How much effort have they actually put in and what have they achieved?” asked Wong.
Taking Lau to task, Wong said rather than promoting longevity noodles, the voters in Lanang constituency would surely prefer to see her frequently sharing plans that benefit the people, especially when it comes to addressing issues related to the federal government.
They undoubtedly expect her to devote more time and attention to the people and her constituency, rather than mere noodle promotion, he added.
“Take the Sibu Airport Road which is under the jurisdiction of federal government as an example, despite receiving RM140,000 monthly for maintenance, the road conditions are still unsatisfactory. Shouldn’t these two DAP MPs demonstrate to the people how they will bring about improvements in the shortest possible time?
“As for the improvement of the Sibu Hospital car park, Ling seems to be more concerned than his colleague, as he has allocated RM500,000 twice for the expansion of the hospital’s open-air parking lot. However, his allocation is merely a drop in the ocean.
“As a Member of Parliament for over a decade, he (Ling) should bring about a permanent solution that truly satisfies the support of the voters in general elections.”