On a walk-about in Sibu Central market.

SMC chairman thinks he can do it with the residents backing him

KUCHING: Sibu Municipal Council chairman Clarence Ting Ing Horh is a no-nonsense guy who wants to turn Sibu into a liveable town.

Ting, who has a wealth of experience from his previous job as deputy chairman of Sibu Rural District Council, knows that he may be stepping on a few toes to achieve his desire for Sibu but he knows by getting things done, the majority of the people will be with him.

He admitted that taking Sibu up to the next level is going to be an uphill task but with the support of all especially the Sibu folks, he believes that anything can be done.

On a sunny Saturday afternoon, instead of relaxing, Ting goes on a drive in Sibu housing estates to check out a few things.

He said it is more to see what should be done in some areas and whether the complaints put up has been resolved.

On a walk-about in Sibu Central market.

His main focus included issues that affect the daily lives of Sibu folks such as cleanliness of the town, toilets, drains, illegal extensions, parks, removing abandoned vehicles that are a nuisance and creating jobs for the youths.

Ting said he has placed his councillors according to their strength in the respective committees.

“It is important to get the right person to do the right job. I have to go straight into working mode and now it is over a month, I have not stopped.

“My councillors are basically pressured to perform in their respective tasks but I must say some of them have been excellent. It is only fair for some to be more familiar in what they are supposed to do,” he said.

Whenever, he has time, Ting would be at the housing estates or checking out the eateries in the town. He has made it a point to ‘tour’ the toilets to see for himself the actual situation.

“My first emphasis is on dry toilets. That is not enough. Dry to me means clean and the toilets must be perfectly working. I will not settle for less,’ he said.

He has told off a few shop owners that their toilet may be dry and clean but it is not in working condition.

Pointing out that rainfall is not smelly, he asked his staff why the public are always complaining of smelly dirty drains. He said a great number of coffee shops do not use grease trap thus the drains are clogged with food waste which gives out a pungent smell.

Ting said he is going a step further with grease trap. He wants business people to register with the council to clean those grease traps. He said this is the job left for the experts to do and also it is a way of creating jobs for youths.

Not believing in using the ‘cane’ all the time, Ting said Sibu people including those in the outskirts have to be educated.

“It is going to be a long process but we have to start somewhere. Next year, we are going into all primary schools to teach the school children the importance of recycling, throwing the correct rubbish into the correct bins. The effect will not be seen immediately but through the years, we can achieve a generation of environmentalists.”

He said littering is an offence with compound fees of RM500. Unfortunately, those who were caught were mostly people from the villages.

Ting is also reaching out to young parents to change their mindset about educating their children overseas.

“Once children are educated overseas, chances of them returning to make Sibu a better place is quite minimal, he said.

Saying that he will be a chairman for all Sibu people regardless of race, religion or political affiliation, Ting concluded that all he wants is for Sibu people to make the town great again.