Thursday, November 20, 2008

More on Rebana Ubi Arches - all 14 of them!

Updates: Nov 21, 4pm - Just an advertising gantry, not arch

More information has surfaced over the controversial Rebana Ubi Arch to be built along the Federal Highway. The Star has quoted the Datuk Bandar as saying that the arch was part of a campaign to promote Islam Hadhari and that approval was given in August. The company putting up the arch is Libroff Media Shd Bhd.

Following protests by residents in the area, which had their water supplies disrupted, because of preliminary groundworks, the contractor has been asked to put a stop to the works. The Malay Mail has revealed further that the arch is part of a trade off between the government and the media owner.

It reported that the media owner will bear the cost of constructing and maintaining not one but 14 arches, costing RM1mil each, at selected highways for a 15 year concession and a five year waiver of advertising licensing fees, following an agreement signed with the government. So, it boils down to money. The government would also have access to each of these sites for advertisement.

So, taxpayers money would not be used but I think Malaysians, especially Klang Valley folks, would want to know how the structures would look like.There are already too many billboards along the highway and the last thing they want is an arch that promotes more products under the guise of promoting Islamic Hadhari.

The trouble with the authorities involved is that they did not bother to inform the public and media of their plans. They think they can put up anything they want and when a protest crops up, they buy time by seeking a review to calm down temperature. But in the end, they just go ahead without giving two hoots about how the public feels. The public, as road users and tax payers, surely have a right to know how the arches would look and where the remaining 13 would be put up. It's not anybody's grandfather's road, you know.


Anonymous said...

The ACA should investigate this and make the report public. I am sick of seeing billboard everywhere. The roads belong to the rakyat.

Anonymous said...

Good evening Datuk,

The BN government never learn. It is always self interest over Rakyats' interest.

The way things go, it looks like they are hammering in the nails to the lid of their political coffin.

I couldn't wait to see and hear the last of all their follies.

Anonymous said...

As the saying goes, "Make hay while the sun shines". Yeah, let's sign 20-year contracts, take the dough and scoot. Tomorrow it will be the next government's baby. And who cares then which party comes to power? See you in Hawaii. Aloha.

Anonymous said...

Fees collected, or potential fees that can be collected, belong to the people. The ACA should investigate this. The books of the media company, as well as their associate companies, their directors bank accounts, should all be audited. Similarly the bank accounts and assets of the people who approve the plan should all be audited. If they are clean, then fine, their names are cleared, and we can say it was bad judgement and bad management process.But if there is any abuse, then all the guilty parties should be charged.

Anonymous said...

Many of the warlords in UMNO don't really care about the future of the party. Their real interest is to make money, using UMNO as a vehicle. As long as they can make some quick bucks, it does not matter if the party suffers. And they will go out shouting "Ketuanan Melayu" just so as to protect their own pockets.

Anonymous said...

We really have peabrained people in the government. If they must get into this irritating but tempting billboard thing, then at least they should have been smart enough to put up something that are easier to defend. Instead of arches, if they had started building pedestrain overhead bridges, they would probably had gotten away scot free without so mcuh controversies.And once the pedestrain bridges are up, they could have just snuck in the advertisements. And they could have said they were championing the cause of the poor pedestrains who had to get to the other side of the highway on foot or bicycles. But their rearend-located brains asked them to put up unproductive arches.

Anonymous said...

Datuk, in difficult times like now, I can't imagine what the hell we are spending RM14 mil for all the arches just to promote Islam Hadhari. This is entirely waste of public funds and the goverment should be more careful of its spending.

Bangsa Cina Malaysia said...

it is time to end BEE END (BN)
enough is enough.

ChengHo said...

Why they want to do Arches for Islam Hadhari. I though Islam forbid statue ,symbol,etc?
The company Libre ? sound familiar.

Anonymous said...

Does the Islam Hadhari campaign required billboards?

I'll bet that when the new PM takes over, some supporters will suggest another kind of "Islam" e.g. Islam Baru to be promoted. Then there'll be another series of billboards constructed. It will never end.

Why can't Islam remain as Islam. This is what the majority of muslims want. Use public money to help people with kidney/heart problems instead of allowing them to literally "beg" via newspapers.

Sad Malaysian.

Anonymous said...

Vote the buggers out of office. I am sick of this kind of back door deals.
Set the dogs on these people..

Anonymous said...

hahh..this is going to be a distasteful manner..

good work wcw!

Anonymous said...

Based on the current rental for the billboards,at RM300,000 per year, that will come up to RM4.5 million. Not a bad return for the investment. And as it gets harder and harder to get approval for more billboards along the KL highways, the rental could go up say to RM 400,000 per year (based on the present value ofmoney )in a few years time. One more thing, I doubt the real cost of the arch is RM 1 million. It probably cost less than that, The Rm 1 million is quoted to try to impress the rakyat how much money the media company has to put up, in order to justify the long contract period.

Anonymous said...

Islam Hadhari has been used as an excuse by the people involved (the media company and the people who approved the archses) since they can use religion to suppress opposition to the arches by playing up the extremists. Today they will say one side of the arch is to promote Islam Hadhari, and the other side is for a commercial advertisement. Then when there is a new PM, they can then say Islam Hadhari is no longer in flavour.So then two sides of the arches will be used to commercial advertisements. In any case it is not practical to mix religious billboard with a commercial billboard. What happens when the billboard has a picture of a scantily clad woman?
I suggest that that instead of arches, they should erect pedestrain crossings. That will helpp the people who live or work on one side of the highway and need to get to the other side.