SUPP Official Website SUPP BAWANG ASSAN – ROBERT LAU

SUPP BAWANG ASSAN – ROBERT LAU

SUPP Bawang Assan, Robert Lau Hui Yew is a busy man these days. Throwing his energy and time in party’s work, Lau has been seen going to longhouses once every weekend servicing the longhouse people and getting them involved in ‘gotong royong’ projects.

Hui Yew has matured in politics since his days as a candidate for the by-election of Sibu parliamentary election in 2010 where he lost by a mere 398 votes against DAP Richard Wong Ho Leng (deceased). It was a three corner fight and the Independent candidate, Narawi Haron lost his deposit. The by-election was called after five time MP and Deputy Transport Minister, Datuk Robert Lau passed away due to cancer.

It was a very different Hui Yew four years ago. During the campaigning time, he was allegedly accused of being aloof and not a “ground person.”

Today, Hui Yew proved that he was not what was said of him four years ago. His weekly trip to the longhouses in Bawang Assan was to engage with the longhouse folks and to join the ‘gotong royong’ of which he has no fear of getting dirty.

“One of our party’s constitutions is to give services to the poor and the neglected. As Bawang Assan is a huge area, I decided to divide it into different zones to ensure that no one is neglected. There are 12 Dayak zones and 8 Chinese zones. I make sure we cover all the areas in Nangka, Pahlawan and Bawan Assan go to each zone weekly to see to their needs and attend to their grievances,” he said.

As the Chinese zones were mainly in the town area, Hui Yew asked those who need any assistance to go to the SUPP headquarters in Kampung Nangka.

Hui Yew felt that a lot of rural areas need improvement on infrastructure. He said after discussion, his branch decided to take on the job themselves with the longhouse folks. “We provide the raw materials or building materials and asked the longhouse folks to get involved. It’s a very fulfilling experience. The longhouse folks got what they want and it save the government a lot of money.

In the past, such minor projects were sub out and some of the work done were sloppy and expensive. In the ‘gotong royong’ spirit, everyone will put in their effort to do the best as it was for their usage,” he said.

A couple of weeks ago, the team went to the longhouse and sprayed weedkiller in the drains to prevent them from being blocked in the December rainfall season. It was also to prevent the breeding of rodents and insects.

Realising that the rural people were lacking in infrastructure, Hui Yew said he and his team went every weekend to find out the urgency of the needs. Small projects, he said, were not taken over by them with the help of the longhouse folks. “This was to improve their lives and to keep in contact with them,” he said.

For his branch, Hui Yew had registered more than 2,000 members of which 800 were new members. The majority of them, he pointed out were youngsters. In their first annual general meeting on October 12, Hui Yew said 35% of the committee were Bumiputra.

After our first AGM, we went to the longhouse to introduce the committee members. “We were surprised by the huge turnout from hundreds of longhouse folks,” he said.

For his 2015 year plan, Hui Yew had set up Dayak staff to man the headquarters on a full time basis from Monday to Friday.

Saying that one third of the Bawang Assan voters were Bumiputra, Hui Yew said they had to service them. “We want to ensure that we offer services to everyone, regardless of race or religion. We are very serious in maintaining the seat under the Barisan Nasional. We must win back the hearts of the people through our services,” he added.

Besides making known his work and how to contact them through social media, Hui Yew said he and other Sibu branches had formed a group on watsapp. “We help each other out with information and giving services. There were times when we sit down to discuss on issues and stay connected.”

On the threats of Parti Tenaga Rakyat Sarawak (Teras) and United People’s Party (UPP), Hui Yew said he was not worried of their presence. UPP, he said is an imitation of SUPP. “It sounds like us, looks like us but definitely, it is not us. Even the logo was made to look like us. As I have my friends and members, it is always best to stick to the original. We have been here for a long time with a focus on our direction. Our purpose is to serve and it is the people who will benefit.”

Hui Yew believed that perseverance for those in SUPP will toughen them up. “It has been a long time since we have this good feeling of unity of comradeship and working together. It’s not only in Sibu but all over Sarawak. This is the time for us all to stay united and work towards the glory days we had. We have to prove to the people that we are relevant. I believed that all of us have the same thoughts on the unity of purpose to serve. I appeal to the people to give us a chance. A chance to see for yourself that we in SUPP are working for the people for their betterment.”

For the critics, Hiu Yew said,” SUPP will always be around so you cannot sign us off just like that.

robert lau attending to Brim application (1) gotong royong project in longhouse area Robert Lau

August 2017
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