Kit Siang touts special quota for Felda settlers to address 'neglect'

Modified 12 Jan 2019, 7:39 am

DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang is touting Pakatan Harapan's election manifesto to, among others, provide a special quota to Felda settlers to address what he claimed was neglect under the previous BN government.

"Years of neglect must be corrected. 

"The Education Ministry should provide some special quotas in our Mara boarding schools and public universities for the neglected settlers’ children, who are part of our important future generation, to rectify this neglect.

"This is our fifth special commitment to Felda in the last general election, and we intend to keep it," he said in a statement today.

Lim claimed neglect in providing quality education had led to some settlers' children growing into problematic adulthood.

"Emigration into bigger cities by the younger generation further drains Felda’s settlement of talent pool, leaving the less fortunate behind together with the elderly to fend for themselves.

"Some succumb to drugs addiction and all sorts of social ills, causing issues within the communities that must be fixed immediately," he said.

'Broken communities'

The Iskandar Puteri MP also claimed the previous BN government failed in ensuring adequate infrastructure in Felda settlements, resulting in "broken communities."

"Without decent infrastructures such as paved roads, well-equipped schools, and commercial centres, it has proven hard for the settlers to diversify their communities beyond agriculture.

"This situation has restricted career opportunities for the second generation of Felda settlers, causing a majority of them to move out of their communities into bigger cities in search of better employment," he said.

In just nine months, Lim said Harapan has started on work to fix these problems with additional allocations to bring Felda settlements to be on par with other towns and cities.

"Felda settlers can rest assured that we will continue to do so, as long as we are in power as the Pakatan Harapan government is committed to good governance for the people."

Lim added that adequate technical and vocational education and training (TVET) should also be provided to Felda settlers.

"Going forward, more TVET institutions should be located within Felda communities to provide a supply of skilled labour which then would attract industrial diversification for the community.

"The previous BN government clearly has neglected these aspects of human capital development and perhaps done it on purpose, to keep the Felda settlers forever dependent on them in order to retain their votes indefinitely.

"The Harapan government will ensure that such neglect would never happen again."

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