Sunday, December 14, 2008


I put up my last posting at 11:43pm last night and though I will catch up with some reading of the only monthly periodical/magazine that I read,"Off The Edge". I stopped reading at 12.30am and decided a shut-eye would be healthy.....but sleep did not come...couldn't count them sheep and therefore decided to catch up on my emails. First on the list was mail from lady friend Chok Wan. It was a narration from a blog by drrafick. Here it is and of course no mainstream media would ever give you this type of first-person account:

Bukit Antarabangsa… Multiple tragedy

December 10, 2008 by drrafick

Today is D5 of the Bukit Antarabangsa tragedy. During the highland tower incident, I was part of the medical team assisting in the rescue and support effort but today I am a victim of a similar tragedy. Something that I never thought that would have an impact on me. Relatively in comparison, what happen to those families who loss their love ones is nothing compared to what me and probably 2000 other residents had to endure past 4 days. Many tragedies took place this time around. I am not going to be diplomatic about it. I will say it the way I see it.

Within 2 hour after being made aware of landslide, I and several resident of Taman Bukit Utama activated an Ops Centre (known as TBU Ops Centre). We look at importance issues that we need to tackle mainly water supply, waste disposal, security, food distribution and medical evacuation. What was supposed to be our Taman Ops centre became the Ops Centre to eight "Taman" surrounding ours who were cut off from the outside world. We had no electricity, water, fixed telephone line internet. Most people had limited food in their house as they had already plan to travel for Raya and did not stock up any food.

Within an hour after meeting, we setup and completed a temporary water supply by laying pipes to get mountain water for the resident. Ops centre was up in the next hour and we started communication channel with the outside channel via SMS and arranging food and drinking water supply. We took preventive measures to manage disease outbreak by managing waste. All this was done by a handful of people from Taman Bukit Utama Resident Association (PPTBU). We setup the helipad for the rescue team to come in.

With the help of a friend DSP Kumar, we manage to evacuate by air (Medivac) a total of 39 patients which consist of stroke patients, elderly people, kidney failure patients etc. The patients were evacuated by police air wing which was arranged by DSP Kumar from the UTK through his personal contacts. We did all this independently without the support of any help from the Base station at Ground zero.

Within the first 48 hours, while in darkness several homes was reported to be broken into by unknown people in residential areas adjacent to TBU where there was no or minimal residential coordination among the residents. Food was shortage and cooked food from PBSM (Persatuan Bulan Sabit Merah) did not arrive in timely manner. The longest time was dinner that only reaches us in the morning which was not consumable.

While we are stuck, we had VVIP visitors that come to our area. I would say out of many people that came only a handful was actually helpful. YB Elizabeth Wong, a state Exco came with a working group and arrange generators, fuel, candles, garbage bags and others. She came by foot with very few people and carried the relevant information without empty promises. The IGP came and given me his personal commitment and blessing that, I continue to handle all air evacuation with the support of Police Udara. I was told that the Minister of Information visited only the UMNO relief center at a Condo nearby. He did not come to our place.

The NGO that is worth mentioning is Mercy who gave me some drugs, INSAF who open a small medical clinic for 2 days and MAVFCL (Kapt Bala and his crew) which open a temporary access between Athenaeum condo and a generator set to charge hand phones and Bukit Utama which allows people to leave by foot. It is a regret to note that NO government agency deserves any mention in the first 36 hours of tragedy except for Polis Udara and Jabatan Kebajikan Masyarakat. I think they forgot about us.

While 2000 people were surviving in the darkness and the absence of proper food, Concord Hotel, Ali Maju restaurant, Burger King and many others donated tons of food. Unfortunately, no one attempted to send the food to us. Residents that were not affected by the tragedy and the rescue workers were enjoying them. The kind of food they get down there was lavish. There was fresh roti chanai, tosai mee goreng etc. The best word to describe the situation down there is "food fiesta". Someone commented that there is so much "Teh Tarik" that you can wash your shoes with it.

The landslide is a major tragedy. The bigger tragedy is that the failure of the government to act fast enough. While multiple agencies went into action fast, most of them work independently. On the 3rd day, we had 10 soldiers from RAMD with two officers with the rank of Major that came to our centre. I ask them a basic question on their role and the officers could not give me a straight answer. He was very blur. To me his presence was a liability to the ops center as we had to feed an additional 10 mouth with our limited stocks.

This is not the first time a tragedy takes place. The disaster relief operation was not well coordinated. The command and control was lacking. Information dissemination to the media was scattered and causes panic among the people. Many friends and relatives outside calls us and we could not entertain them, as our battery power was limited.

In terms of political publicity, I would say UMNO was a clear winner. This is because they control the media. Unfortunately, I would say that in the hearts of the people UMNO loss big time. The high-level conduct of their people on the ground and their selective helps that was given out was too much to bear. In fact, the Putri Umno head that I had known past few months was behaving in such a highhanded manner that really shows her true colours. They were hoarding food and distributing them to "their people". Their action has only reinforced my idea that the Federal and the State Government must be from different parties. This is needed for check and balance.

Malaysian must realize that for the sake of our own lives and our own children lives, we have to have balance of power. It was because of lack of balance of power; the water catchment area that is a state land was given to MBF and is now known as "Bukit Antarabangsa".

In my assessment, the government is liable. In this case, the government was led by BN in the state of Selangor and at National level past 50 odd years that is liable for the suffering of the people of Bukit Antarabangsa. They are liable because they alienated unsuitable land for development. They are liable for giving the people the false sense of security by approving development plans and projects. They are liable for hiding information from the people that shows that the area that we are buying is not safe for living.

I will only vote for balance of power in the future and UMNO will not be part of that balance.





concerned citizen: said...

I will only vote for balance of power in the future and UMNO will not be part of that balance.

Zorro, you forgot this one as well. It is free. Just add it or upload it or add the link.

Landslide survivor: We are victims of corruption

Among his first steps will be to ensure that politicians - like those who approved the development projects in Bukit Antarabangsa - are not placed in decision making positions.

Asked what this means in concrete terms, Farid said he would start by campaigning against Umno in the upcoming Kuala Terengganu by-election by telling voters the dangers of keeping the party in power.
(Ungku Farid Ungku Abdul)-Malaysiakini

Anonymous said...

Umno has been in the lying business since the day they usurped power. The mainstream press has been at their beck and call. Even during the tragedy in Bukit Antarabangsa, Umno is profiting by controlling food rations and donations. We have had enough of lies, deception, bigotry, idiocy. The people's biggest regret was that we couldnt finish off the job in the March elections. Come the next election, we will surely wipe out Umno once and for all. This is the final solution to the hated Umno problem.

Samuel Goh Kim Eng said...


If there's genuine interest in serving society in need
Then there must be direct handling of food to those to feed
There'll be no room for anyone with vested interest breed
Only those with no political self-interest sow the best seeds

(C) Samuel Goh Kim Eng - 141208
Sun. 14th Dec. 2008.

Anonymous said...

I could'nt help but to draw a comparison from the Sichuan earthquake. I was in China, saw on TV how the govt mobilized the army and volunteers to tackle the disaster without fearing for their own lives!
There, we are talking of thousand of square kilometers and almost a million people were effected.
If I were to compare the disasters, Bukit Antarabangsa landslide was just a dwarf, yet, this 'mighty' UMNO-BN govt could'nt do the right thing. Like I mentioned many times before, this is not their field of expertise, arrogance, corruption and distortions are.
Zorro, you and other helpers have the right attitude and deserve admiration and praise...I am positive all of you offer your help, simply for the love of your fellow men.

matador said...

I totally agree with your article but do not look at only one side of the coin.

I would rather piss on them rather than giving a helping hand to a bunch of ungrateful idiots.

Want to stay in hotel for free when other disaster victims stay in Balai Raya.

Want people to assist in carrying their stuff when it is not the priority.

So complacent to have free taxi when other have to walk.

So easy complaining volunteers, police and army personnel having sweet time eating but not realizing these unsung heroes had put their lifes at risk by working overtime when the idiots were sleeping.

telur dua said...

This is payback time for all the sins and abuses committed by the UMNO led Gomen. All the shit is floating to the surface. How unfortunate that it is the people who bear the brunt and not them.

Remember all this well in the next GE.

Monsterball said...

Thanks for picking up the post, Zorro.

This tragedy is at least partly the product of decades of an unhealthy and dirty symbiosis between BN, Local Councils and Developers. Oh, its a mutually beneficial arrangement - the losers are the house buying public.

Notice how the haste with which the Housing and Local Govt. Minister Ong Ka Chuan doing a Samy Vellu by declaring the incident an "Act of God" ?

Anonymous said...

do you expect a decadent political beast to behave differently?
UMNO is now a political vehicle to get rich. Nothing more and nothing less.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing this with us.
Although I am not surprised, I am utterly disgusted with the attitude of those rescue workers. This is the bad fruits sown by BN. Should we allow our nation to continue with this rot?

Anonymous said...

"In terms of political publicity, I would say UMNO was a clear winner."

And Tan Sri Muhuhideen, was bahaving like he is the Deputy Prime Minister. All these UMNO goons want a share of cheap publicity at the expense of those who are suffering. He really acted a like a "sombong" bastard trying to tell everyone, "Look out, your next Deputy Prime Minister is concern too!"

Egoistic son of a gun!

Anonymous said...

Zorro - your prejudices against BN (justified) clouds the picture. It takes two to clap. Why are you always faulting the same one? The developer of Bkt Atbgsa was MBF. MBF has left eyesores all over the country - yet there is not a mention of this in your blog.
There must be a crusade against all the developers even Lee KY of Country Heights. Why do you start this crusade and bring these businesses down?

zorro said...

Anon 7:26. Why dont you go to my latest posting. Dont just spit is rude and uncouth.
I spoke out and wrote about the developer or my condominium and they are suing me, if that will make you any happier. But I dont blame anybody and I will not politicise about it. I will take on the developers. You can go to your corner and will not bother me.

Anonymous said...

don't get mad lah

went to your latest posting and to other links that say that in the case of Damansara 21, Shearn Delamore is acting for SDB.

resident associations and individuals efforts are exercises in futility...i speak from experience....given the powers against them

we will go the way of the african nations despite your best efforts

i will go to my corner and cry for you