Sunday, November 21, 2010

‎State Government and MBI must address 3 issues following Arumugam's snake bite death in Buntong, Ipoh.

My statement following my visit to the deceased's family in Buntong, Ipoh

State government and MBI must address 3 issues following Arumugam’s death due to snake bite

Arumugam , aged 42, from Buntung, Ipoh, died of snake bite yesterday.

When I visited the bereaved family today, I was told that the deceased had previously made numerous complaints of presence of snakes to the local authority (MBI).

The snakes live at his neighboring land/lots which has heavy under growth. Over 120 families live in the surrounding area.

I was shocked when told that at one time, 12 snakes had entered his house in a day.

Together with the locals, we handed over some cash and food aid to the bereaved family.

The deceased has 2 young children. The elder child is in Form 4 while the other one is just 5 years old.

The deceased was the sole bread winner of the family. The wife is a home maker and has been medically unwell for some time.

The locals are angry and they demand to know why has the MBI failed to act despite so many complaints having been made about the threat posed by the snakes?
If MBI has acted on the deceased’s complaints, his tragic death could have been avoided.

Perak state government and MBI must now address the followings 3 issues:-1) Why the necessary action was not taken to clean/clear up the undergrowth?
2) When will top brass of MBI visit the deceased family and apologise for this mishap
3) What form of compensation will the state government and MBI give to the deceased family?

Lastly, the MBI must immediately act to clear the undergrowth and eradicate the snakes
On line news
Between 10 to 12 snakes could be seen slithering daily within the premises of A. Palanimal's home at the Ipoh Tamil Settlement village in Buntong here.

The 38-year-old housewife said the snakes, ranging from poisonous to non-venomous snakes of all sizes would enter her home frequently to the horror of her family.

"The snakes can be seen hiding in our toilet and sometimes sleeping on a ceiling bar in our bedroom," said Palanimal when met at her temporary home, provided by a neighbour, in the village yesterday.

"The villagers have even caught a three-metre long python near my home about a month ago," she added.

Palanimal said her husband R. Arumugam, 42, died on Friday after he was bitten by a snake, believed to be a King Cobra, on Nov 12.

"This is the second time my husband had been bitten by a snake," said Palanimal.

"The first time that he was bitten was about three months ago and he survived the ordeal," she said, adding that the snakes started appearing since three years ago.

Palanimal explained that her husband was about to feed their dog when the snake bit him in the leg at about 8pm on that unfortunate day.

"We will usually just leave the snakes alone as they come and go," she said.
She said her late husband had complaint to the Ipoh City Council on several occasions to clear the area near her home, which was surrounded by bushes but to no avail.

She noted that the area at the village was like a "forest" in the middle of the city.

"I am scared of going back to that house now," she said, adding that she was afraid that both her children, Thivananthan, 16 and three-year-old Kalaivani, would be harmed.

Ipoh Barat MP M. Kulasegaran, who visited the family, said Arumugam's death was unnecessary and the incident could have been avoided.

The city council could have just brought in bulldozers and tractors to clear up the bushes when a complaint was made.

"Arumugam's family has lost their sole breadwinner now because of the city council's inaction," he said.

"I will be discussing with the family tomorrow to take legal matters against the city council," he added.

Kulasegaran later presented the deceased's family with some grievance aid and foodstuffs.

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