KUALA TERENGGANU, 12 Jan 2009: At a glance, Kampung Cina here has the uncanny resemblance to the famous Petaling Street of Kuala Lumpur.
Although it lacks the liveliness of Petaling Street and its heaps of clothing, bags, watches and perfumes, Kampung Cina still has its own identity, especially at night with neon lights decorating the village.
Following Kuala Terengganu being declared a Heritage Waterfront City early last year, its people have seen changes being made from the lamp posts, roads, alleys and to the drains.
The state government had also allocated RM2 million last year to upgrade 700 metres of road by using bricks like that of sidewalks.
The busy daytime traffic and thriving businesses are a testament to Barisan Nasional’s (BN) successful governance in the state.
Bandar assemblyperson Toh Chin Yaw, when met by Bernama, said the state government had also given residents a paint subsidy to paint their business premises and homes to spruce up the village.
“During the PAS-led (state government) days, the people did not want to sit outside on the sidewalks as it was too dark, the roads were damaged and the drains clogged.
“Since the BN took over, we see more people lounging outside their home because there are street lights, the drains aren’t clogged and the roads are smooth,” he said.
Toh, who was described by residents as proactive, said if they gave the mandate to BN, development could still continue.
He said since Kampung Cina’s image had improved, the village’s social scene had picked up with activities such as lantern festivals and new year celebrations each year.
Meanwhile, Kampung Cina Committee member Law Lorenz, 47, said he was satisfied with the services rendered by BN.
“Although development is still lacking, we can see BN’s efforts to develop our area. We hope it will continue,” he said.
Tan Heng Pin, 73, a boat spare parts trader, who is also a Kuala Terengganu voter, said he hoped the victorious candidate could take care of the people’s welfare.
“We hope the people can earn a decent living and have a comfortable life. It is important that the people are not poor,” he said.
He added that he was grateful to be able to earn about RM20,000 a month compared to only RM7,000 previously, from the government’s effort of giving licences to small boat fisherfolk.
Kampung Cina has about 600 residents.