the new lunar year draws near, it is time of the year again for Malaysians
of the Chinese decent to prepare and usher in the new year wishing that
this new year will bring each and everyone in the family good health and
Like every Malaysians, we too wish that the year of the
Golden Monkey will bring us hope for greater PEACE, HARMONY and
Since the implementation of the GST in April last year and the
depreciation of the ringgit, we have encountered rising costs of living
and those of us doing business have to cope with the rising cost of doing
business and live with dwindling margins.
The impact of the drop in oil prices internationally had even forced our
government to review the budget which was tabled barely a few months ago.
The issues on the performance of government linked companies and the
elusive donations by the Saudi King which were highlighted by the
international media had also dented the image of the country.
Political squabbles at the national level created
even more delusions! To add salt to the wound, the newly announced
increase in the foreign workers' levy will further dampen the economy.
2016 is not going to be an easy year. Already faced with the increasing
costs of almost everything, and by June when the Price Control and
Anti-Profiteering Regulation 2014 comes to an end, there is the likelihood
that we will see further increase in prices of our daily consumables.
fact, the government should get TNB and SESB to revise electricity tariffs
downward immediately as this can directly and immediately helped to bring
down cost of living and help local manufacturers and service providers to
bring down their costs of production which could eventually be translated
into lower cost of living.
Further, when revising the Budget 2016, the
Government could have announced a waiver on income tax payment for income
earners at the middle income level and below, just as the Government did
during the financial crisis in 1998.
Malaysians are faced with economical and political challenges and a
growing threat in security. Although some of these problems might be
unavoidable, we Sabahan should have the capability to lessen the severity
of these impacts, by getting back our autonomy.
In order to achieve that, Sabahan needs to increase our awareness on our rights guaranteed by MA63,
and come to understand the importance of the roles of local political
Take Sarawak as an example, many rights and autonomy have been
regained because their local ruling party is not in direct control of the
Malayan power nor be sacrificed for the interests of Malaya.
Knowing the woes should not bring about greater negativity but instead,
these woes should become reminders as we gear up into the new year and be
prepared for the upcoming circumstances.
We should continue to be
steadfast of the rights and benefits of Sabahans and together, we should
garner our strength in unity and protect what is ours!
"United We Build, Together We Progress"
Wishing All A Progressive New Year! Gong Xi Fa Cai!
From: Melanie Chia Chui Ket, Deputy President, Sabah Progressive Party