Thursday, April 18, 2013

From The Star Newspaper

Malacca launches trust fund to help people with medical bills

MALACCA: The state government officiated the launch of a trust fund to help its people who cannot afford to pay their medical bills.
Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam said the Melaka Health Trust Fund would help certain categories of people.
Applications for aid would go through a committee supervised by the state government.
Several criteria apply in order to be eligible, such as the absence of any other financial assistance and having outstanding housing and vehicle loans.
A sum of RM430,000 was raised through donations from 20 state government and private agencies at the launch of the fund on Tuesday.
Ali Rustam said that there had been a rise in the number of people seeking medical treatment of late. Bernama

From The New Straits Times

Malacca tourism projects benefit all

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REMAINING FRESH: New attractions ensure that tourists become frequent visitors to the state

ARE the tourism-related development plans which would be implemented in Malacca a waste, or would it be something which would hugely benefit the people, regardless of their political beliefs?
This seems to be one of the major topics being played up in the state as it heads towards the 13th General Election.
The opposition parties in Malacca, for their own political survival, have been harping on various tourism-related projects without realising that they are also the ones who benefit from the tremendous surge of tourists to the historical city.
Last year, Malaysia saw tourist arrivals of 25 million, of which 13.7 million visited Malacca compared with 12.1 million in 2011.
Malacca -- which was awarded World Heritage City Status by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) -- continues to attract not just foreign tourists but also locals as well.
One may wonder why the Malacca government needs to have so many new projects for tourism, rather than relying on the historical sites, culture, arts and tradition left behind by the Portuguese, Dutch, and British, or even focusing on the unique Baba Nyonya and Melaka Chitti communities.
Truth be told, if there are no new attractions, Malacca would not be a destination which is repeatedly frequented by tourists.
Projects such as the Malacca River Cruise, beautification of Sungai Melaka, Melaka Wonderland, Menara Taming Sari, Melaka Botanical Garden and the more than 25 museums in the state have been attracting tourists in droves, and the spillover effect has benefited people of all walks of life and political ideology.
Regardless if one is a bullock cart operator, trishaw rider, selling pisang goreng, souvenir shop owner, restaurant proprietor, tourist guide, painter, artist, hotelier or even a vendor of the small stalls located along the bustling Jonker Street, tourism is what supports them and their families.
In this regard, the tourists who come do not look at political ideology, but at what is being sold or the services offered.
Thus, the claim that millions of ringgit which the state government had spent on tourism have gone to waste, as raised by the opposition, does not arise as everyone in Malacca had benefited directly or indirectly from this lucrative venture.
And in moving forward and creating more attractions in the state through tourism-related projects, such as the RM30 million Melaka Bird Aviary, the state should not be seen as creating white elephants.
The aviary is expected to attract about 500,000 tourists a year. It also offers visitors an opportunity to walk into a well-maintained tropical rainforest incorporated with beautiful flora and fauna which is ideal for tourism purposes.
What about projects in the pipeline, such as the RM300 million Malacca Sea World theme park which would feature a gigantic aquarium that would be home to marine wildlife such as whales and dolphins? Would it not help boost the tourism industry in Malacca?
Unlike other states and countries that rely on one or two attractions to rope in tourists, Malacca offers a unique and different experience with a constant change of new tourism products.
With a promise to look forward to something new in every visit to the historical city, the state would soon showcase mock-ups of dinosaurs from the time they first appeared during the Triassic period, approximately 230 million years ago.
To be known as the Malacca Jurassic Park, the RM200 million project would be built at the reclaimed coastal area of Klebang which is known at "Dataran 1Malaysia" or 1Malaysia Square.
The Malacca Jurassic Park would feature mock-ups of some 200 species of dinosaurs. They would not be merely gigantic concrete structures, as the models would look life-like and will be able to move with the use of hydraulics and electronic components. It would be the first of its kind in Asia.
Besides the Malacca Jurassic Park and Malacca Sea World, Dataran 1Malaysia would also house the RM2 million Map of Malaysia Square, the RM2.7 million Malacca Bus Restaurant and Chalet and also three football fields.
This is what the government has planned for the future and it is up to us to ensure that Malacca continues to remain relevant in the years to come.

Read more: Malacca tourism projects benefit all - Columnist - New Straits Times

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Malacca .Reborn

Blanketed by ambition and poised at the juncture of restless searching souls, Malacca is unlikely territory for heritage/cultural observations and simplified city-dwelling towers. 
But defiant Malaccans insist on having them, and then, once they are in place, eagerly get
in line to ride up and have a look, in disdain… often comparing what is available with other
localities eg KL, Penang and Singapore.
Kiasu Malaccans !
The latest addition to this fairy lighted city’s soaring slew of buildings, dizzying Ferris wheels 
(in development) and skyscraper-tops is Kerjaya Hotel , which at 42 stories high, holds the 
title as  Malacca’s tallest free-standing tower. 

This Kerjaya project, which has started building, annexed just outside the World Heritage 
center within the old riverine quarter of Malacca has promised to become an instant hot ticket for lodging and F&B in Malacca .

That is tall enough, though, for a head-clearing perspective of sprawling Malacca, 
old quarters and all, all the way to Batang Tiga and faraway Alor Gajah whose multiple 
suburban centers, odd block-based address system and reliance on  highways, by ways 
and  one –way thoroughfares often elicit confusion at ground level for drivers.

Having been up and cosseted within the Renaissance Ramada Hotel’s top floor suite 
(which at 27 floors, is the top most building in Malacca today) ; for me, one surprise in the 
vantage point there is a sudden realization of how far distorted maps of Malacca depart from
the geographic reality of actual Malacca hidden by clouds and the occasional smog from 
Indonesia, from a drivers point of view.
This upstart of a city really is immersed in the beauty of romantic  irrationality and mystery
given that just outside the coast line of dear old Malacca is the Big Island (Pulau Besar) which
to all and sundry looks just like a pregnant damsel lying horizontally awaiting her suitor to 
come rescue her from nearby Gunung Ledang @ Mt.Ophir.
Throbbing with commerce and life, on any given weekday and weekend morning, you may 
find an animated crowd waiting patiently in Melaka Taming Sari Building to buy tickets, to 
ride up gasping at a rapidly ascending view - through clear windows in the round revolving 
Tower’s safety lift mechanism cum observation deck, pointed out landmarks keyed 
on satellite maps and once upon a time, the privileged view of birds of prey soaring high
 up along the coastline.
In retrospect just 15 years ago; circa 1998 Malacca was still identified as a sleepy hollow but 
with the will power of a forward looking administration she has clearly leapt high in modernizing 
herself whilst sustaining her ancestral heritage and glory. Malacca is now regaining her 
yesteryear glory as a multicultural place of interest.
This city thrives and purrs underneath the closseted alacrity of glass buildings and 
thoroughfares running through her like so much veins of commerce throbbing with the life of 
 That is when you know the city has been able to demarcate the line between  tradition,
heritage saving and modern city living .The move from township to city feels just right — 
at the peripheral limits of the Old Town a new city is given birth to; but still within her 
inner traversing pathways the confines and limitations of her  old ways of life can still be 
found, proudly scanning the new grand geography. 

Traffic streams by on nearby expressways in a blur of red and white light, the future 
Ferris wheel at the reclaimed  waterfront cum entertainment complex  near Taman Melaka
Raya will whirl with its own bright display, and that old girl-Malacca stands proud, 
her shadows glimmering beneath the illuminated Highway Bridge. 
Malacca's new born ambiance seems to appeal to young lovers. Couples who appeared to be
out on a date dominate the thin crowd outside on warm evenings.Clusters of lighted 
skyscrapers mark the coast line of this new city within the boundaries of vision and desire.
On clear nights, the magnificent view extends to the horizon, identifiable by a glimpse of the
Menara Taming Sari, The condominiums in Klebang and the Mahkota skyline.

Making this another restive but thriving, throbbing port of destination to the weary souls of this world. 

Blog Archive



"Rojak " Video By The Suleiman Brothers

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The Malacca Story (Chinese version)

with courtesy to asmaliana-BPP

The Malacca Story (part 2)

The Malacca Story (part 3)

With courtesy to Asmaliana-BPP