Monday, March 16, 2009

AN HOUR WITH MR. NASIR ABDULLAH, A Chairperson of Skim Penempatan Kampung Bahagia

This conversation was undertaken in Skim Penempatan Kampung Bahagia on March 16, 2009 at the house of Mr. Nasir Abdullah.

Yaz: Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullah. Since when you start involving in community leadership?

Nasir: Waalaikum salam warahmatullah, Actually, I start my involvement in community leadership way back 1992 at the time when Sharif Jul bin Titing served as chairperson (JKKP) of Skim Penempatan Kampung Bahagia. By that time, I already have experience in leadership only not yet fully matured compare to this time. Then I tasked as an adviser of the chairperson. With this little task, I tried my best to give what I can. At the time when Sharif Jul bin Titing retired from his post as chairperson, his brother Sharif Hashim replaced him. It was 1994 the leadership transition took place. As new chairperson, Sharif Hashim appointed me as his adviser until 1995. After that, he assigned me to hold security task in the community. After two years, I assigned to chair the religious affair in the community. It was that time people started calling me Imam. I spent 7 years as a caretaker of religious affair in this community. After that position the people of the community entrusted me to serve as their chairperson. It was in 2004 where my career as chairperson Skim Penempatan Kampung Bahagia started. With this position, I found many challenges, which I did not meet when I was an adviser. However, it did not stop me to serve my people.

Yaz: as a chairperson what are the approaches you adopt to maintain peace and harmony in this community.

Nasir: Based on my experience mingling with the people is the best approach I have shown to them. Through this approach, the bond of love between leader and its subject will loom. If this chemistry realize burden in handling community will lessen. The biggest problem will arise once a leader like me tolerates tribalism. I believed a community should stand as one body and soul. The latter should advise the erstwhile in any transaction. So do with community. His populace in all the ways should not forsake the leader. The people should give comment, suggestion, and recommendation, which can bring goodness to the community as a whole.

Yaz: For almost 5 years as a chairperson, what do you prospect for the future of your community and its people?

Nasir: Well, all of us have respective vision. As a leader, I wish, as I retire from this post, I can see my community improving in all aspect. Thanks to Allah by now, our community is religiously active. I am sure Allah will not take this from us once the people will not swerve from his path. I hope in the future, with the help of Allah, we can build madrasah for our people even though we already given school KAFA. I saw that once our children finish grade 6 from said school they have no other option than to stop studying. Therefore, if there is madrasah in this community, those pupils from KAFA who want to pursue their studies they can have it here. As of now, this is my concern most. I hope before I step down I can find ways to realize my vision for my community and my people.

Yaz: Lastly, What is your stand towards pollution emitted from Palm oil factories, IOI and IJM?

Nasir: Honestly, this problem is detrimental to our health particularly to our children. In past few years there have been many complains I received from my people especially the owners of fish cages regarding hundreds of their fishes died caused by the toxic from IOI factory poured to the seawater. As I knew that, I automatically brought that complaint to the management of said factory, however, the case unfairly settled. I hope the pollution problem in our community will solve fairly.

Additionally, why I mention pollution problem as detrimental, lately I observed there has been many changes I see in my people regarding health crisis. Maybe if you want to conduct research inside the community you will find many people suffering from cold and other sickness. What amazes me why our children always having this illness? Before, we don’t experience it. I’m afraid; this problem would affect our health seriously should this problem remain unsolved.

Yaz: I thank you for your time. I wish you all the best.



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