|SIBU (Jan 1): Sarawak Teachers Union (STU) Sibu Division is hoping that Transport Minister Anthony Loke’s efforts in successfully getting airlines to lower their airfare during the coming Lunar New Year, can also be extended to other festivals and more importantly, school holidays.
Its chairman, Yong Sie Hing, cited an example, where he had to fork out more than RM1,000 for a return airfare for the Sibu-Kuala Lumpur trip to attend the Congress of Unions of Employees in the Public and Civil Services (Cuepacs) convention middle of this month.
“Imagine if I were to travel with my parents, wife and children – how much do I have to spend just on airfare alone. A month’s salary is not enough,” he said at the World Teachers’ Day celebration, retirement and appreciation ceremony at Paramount Hotel here yesterday.
Councillor Joshua Ting, representing Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Dato Sri Tiong King Sing, to officiate at the event.
Yong likened teachers to batteries that needed to be charged by going off for a break during year-end school holidays.
He lamented when the airfares were excessively high, teachers would not be able to travel outside Sarawak.
He appealed to Loke to hear the plight of teachers in Sarawak, and is confident that the minister would lend a helping hand.
Yong also thanked Loke for lowering airfares for the coming Chinese New Year Celebration.
“I hope this will not stop here, but instead continue to other festivals such as Hari Raya, Gawai Dayak, Christmas, Deepavali and others.
“Don’t forget school holidays and year-end school holidays,” he added.
On another note, Yong thanked Tiong for his contribution of RM10,000 in June this year, to enable them to roll out the event.
At the same function, 65 retired STU members were recognised for their contribution. Among them was former STU Sibu Division chairman, Tan Kuang Wui.
STU president Kullin Djayang, Sibu District Education officer Ahli Chikba, Sarawak Secondary Schools Principals Association Sibu Division chairman David Teo, Headmasters’ Council Sibu chairman Sharkawi Hamdan, and Sibu Chinese Teachers Association chairman Chan Siah Kuong were also present at the event.