Mang Sri Aman

Mang goes to the Farm

Nadai Nama Nama made another stopover while cruising the Jaong - Sri Aman road when I saw a little girl walking along the roadside. What got my attention was the little figure that was walking the distance with her family? Curiousity got the best of me and I parked my car at a safe spot beside the road. This stretch is famous for those who wish to test their car's top speed. When I whipped my camera out the Mum told the little girl to smile "Peda nuan Mang, urang ngambi gambar nuan" (Mang, look someone is taking your picture). So I called the family for a brief chit chat to find out more about the family especially why the little girl was not in a pre school.


"Peda nuan Mang, urang ngambi gambar nuan"


Family photo of Ganang (Mang's father), Mum and Mang

Mang was a bit scared at first but I introduced myself and informed them that my purpose was just to talk. The mum told me that Mang was accompanying them to the farm which was quite a distance from their longhouse in Abok, Sri Aman. They were cautious at first as I was informed that sometimes strangers would stop by and extort money or whatever valuables they can get. I found out Mang was just over 5 years old. Ganang (Mang's dad) also explained that he had recently suffered from a minor stroke but he struggles to go to the farm with the wife to ensure that they have enough food for the upcoming year. I adviced them to send Mang to the nearest pre-school or let her stay home. The family informed me that they do not have enough money and that their house was not in good condition . I was surprised that they were not aware of the types of assistance that the government was providing to those who are in the 'poor' and 'extremely poor' category. I asked them if any government agencies have visited their longhouse to get their details but they informed me that its hard to trust people nowadays. Some of them had been conned of their valuables by people who claim to be from government agencies but who are actually con men who wear the agency's corporate uniforms. They would pretend to do some survey of the longhouse but instead collected valuable items from the innocent folks as part of the survey exercise. I understand their predicament as most folks who are in the longhouse are still illiterate. and I managed to get the details of the family for my future visit.

While driving back to the office I felt something was wrong somewhere as some of the surveys on poor families may have missed its target and objectives. Ganang and his family are not the only ones whom I have met for roadside conversations like this. The Government is aiming to eradicate extreme poverty by the year 2010. This is a noble intention and there have been many programs run by the welfare agencies to get the poor in our community listed in E- Kasih. Some are genuine cases but some are just 'pok nasib' or trying their luck. Somewhere along the way the channel of communication, especially at Tuai Rumah level needs to be enhanced. The Jawatankuasa Kemajuan & Keselamatan Kampung (JKKK), and the 'Wakil Rakyat's Service Centre' (how many are operational?) play an important role here. I was wondering if they can be part of future Key Performance Index (KPIs). But its the Tuai Rumahs who should be taking care of their anembiaks (families in the longhouse) and report the matter to the relevant agencies so that their 'poor' status can be verified.

Nadai Nama Nama hopes to get more information on this matter soon. Cheers.

Comments

Xanda Xerox said…
I think it's great that u care enough to analyze their predicament. I have always felt that the rural poor have been left out just purely from distance... 'Out of sight, out of mind' syndrome. I believe u r correct to say that better communication between rural poor and govt agencies would probably help solve this lack of assistance.
headsteadi said…
you're such a dedicated man! if one day you ever become a politician, your constituency is guaranteed to prosper :)
Big Momma said…
agree with headsteadi.... ada bakat jadi YB!
Willie said…
In my opinion, government has provided ways to eradicate poverty. But too bad, some young people do not see the importance of upgrading themselves. And it is happening in my two kampung. Asyik merempit, rokok, minum sampai mabuk dan tak nak sekolah. Hampeh!
Desmond said…
TQ Xanda - yup i need to determine where the main problem lies...or the bottleneck

Headsteadi & Big Momma - thank you but its also good to work as administrator hand in hand with a Yang Berhormat. We work as a team :)

Willie - we can try to change things with our strong points. Me with a blog and you with your camera :)
Hamidah Mohamad said…
Your roadside random survey goes to prove that further efforts like more ground visits by the relevant agencies to those still affected under the extreme poverty category and get them registered for due assistance if it is to fully achieve this noble objective by year 2010. While we’re in full support of the government’s continuous efforts in eradication of poverty and rural developments lets hope that these deserving group gets a fair share and not being left out in the nation’s building and development.
Jeev said…
I'm happy that there are still people in Malaysia who care about the welfare of these folks. Good job Desmond. If you run for political office, let me know, I'll support you 100% :)
Desmond said…
Agen Hammy - I am knocking on the Welfare Department's door now and will continue to knowck for an answer.

Jeev - Thank you Sir... but politicians are a special category of people with an extra capability to weather the political storm. I rely on thier wisdom for the formulation of policies and I try muy best to carry them out...an administrator at heart, that I am Sir.
Wilson said…
good move there my friend, I'm so piss off when read that the conned this people property. How can they do that, they are already in such difficult condition...
curse the conner...