I was really outraged when I heard from my colleague at Health. We were in Bangar, Temburong yesterday for His Majesty's Birthday Celebrations there. While waiting for lunch, we had a chat.
It seemed that someone tried to steal the copper cables at RIPAS Hospital. When he tried to do something to there power, the whole thing tripped up and caused a massive blackout at RIPAS. One of the patients affected was a baby who was in the incubator. Yesterday, the innocent baby was still fighting for his life. He was fighting for his life because of the high price of copper (around US$3.50 nowadays). This is not the first time that life may be lost because of the irresponsible act of the thieves.
Last month, I was visiting the housing estate in Katok (near Mata-Mata) where there was already built about 7 substations. The houses are to be built soon but the engineers were telling me that the substations were useless. They have all been stripped of any valuable metals. It takes about a quarter of a million to build a single one of these. Luckily the thieves only stole from the substations which did not support any houses at the moment. Though it's only a matter of time before they moved to the ones with houses.
The PWD people told me that it's not just cables and metals. There was a public work which they did in Sungai Kebun. The contractors came in to fix the windows and when they moved to the other side of the building, thieves came in and stole the ones they just fixed in broad daylight and with the contractors unable to stop them because they were threatened.
What happened? Have our society become so hard up? We have all the welfare policies in place. We have welfare allowances. We have welfare housing. If these are not the poor Bruneians then who are these people who stole our stuffs and put us in danger?
When we widened our scope and read and watch more - this is what we get. Smugglers smuggling out our subsidised petrol and subsidised rice. Bruneians selling fuel to foreigners using their 4 wheel drives. The government subsidised fuels and rice so that we Bruneians can enjoy the fruits and wealth of our own petrol. And yet this is blatanly abused. What has happened to our people? Do we not care about putting innocent lives at stake anymore?