Veveonah’s Brother Schools Deputy Ministers Sceptical of Hometown’s Internet Woes

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“Come and see for yourself.”

This was Mekvin Mosibin’s response to two deputy ministers who accused his sister, Veveonah, of being a publicity-seeker instead of someone highlighting the lack of Internet access in her village in Pitas, Sabah.

In a Facebook post last night, Mekvin challenged Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Zahidi Zainul Abidin and Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Abdul Rahim Bakri to see for themselves the plight faced by rural Sabahans.

Mekvin told them that it was better to find out firsthand the villagers’ complaints rather than get information from secondary sources.

“You will feel the lives of the villagers, only then will you know instead of just sending letters back and forth from the wrong people,” he said.

Mekvin criticised Zahidi for relying on Rahim for information. Rahim was widely criticised for claiming in a since-deleted Facebook post that Veveonah lived in town and her family no longer had a house in Kampung Sepatalang where she claimed to climb a tree to sit for her exams.

“YB Abdul Rahim got his info on Kampung Sepatalang from [village head] Elwin Madisa. He and his wife were formerly with the village management committee and who kicked out my father. Elwin himself is not from Kampung Sepatalang.

“This information is inaccurate and a source of discontent for me. If you do not know what the problems in the village are but insist on interfering, in the end you become a YB who knows nothing but merely makes random content,” he said.

“If you are a YB (Yang Berhormat), go to the ground. Come to all the rural villages…only then, you will know.

“See for yourself how people in villages are living. Try using the Internet here yourself,” Mekvin said, adding that villagers are often deprived of proper Internet access because they cannot afford high data packages.

“Villagers like us cannot afford to pay much for the Internet. Whenever we go online to answer our exams, we have to wait for a long time and usually only the Logo Raksaksa (referring to Google’s offline dinosaur game) comes out.

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“Of course, you are a YB, and you can pay more for Internet. So, why pick a fight with villagers who are not your equals?” he added.

Mekvin also commented on Rahim’s claim that his family does not own a home in Kampung Sepatalang, as Veveonah had stated.

“Of course you won’t find our house there because it was in a derelict condition and it has collapsed.

“Furthermore, my family had to move out because we could not cope with the travel expenses to and from our schools, SMK Pitas and SK Pekan Pitas.

“Do you think we are rich enough to buy fuel, YB?” Mekvin said.

A frustrated Mekvin sternly reminded politicians in power to never forget the people’s welfare after getting elected.

“Once you have won you choose only that which pleases you, giving money to your followers who do not know how to manage things, yet alone are aware if they are managed properly.

“YB, you cannot fight the people, because your power is in the hands of the people.

“The people voted for you to become a YB and deputy minister. Now that you have settled into your position, you have forgotten about underprivileged villagers.

“The people are the ones giving power to leaders,” he said.

“So come on down to the interior villages, but do not be selective and visit all the villages as part of your job scope and authority. Try using the Internet there and see how it feels, and this is not even talking about water, electricity, or the roads,” Mekvin added.

He suggested the deputy ministers use a motorcycle instead of a car.

He said neither his sister nor his family members have asked for anyone’s help or sympathy, but the issue has been politicised by irresponsible people.

“My sister made and uploaded the video onto YouTube to share what life is like in our village, how difficult it is to learn and how education is beneficial. My sister and family do not ask for any form of donations or aid.

“Yet there are those who remain political and stubborn, who for some reason are unhappy to see villagers achieve a measure of success,” Mekvin said.