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Saturday August 26, 2006

Putera Umno to set up clubs for Mat Rempit


dharam@thestar.com.my 

KUALA LUMPUR: Putera Umno will set up clubs for the Mat Rempit (illegal street racers) around the country in an effort to reach out to the youngsters and change society's negative perception of them. 

Umno Youth deputy chief Khairy Jamaluddin said only a small group of the bikers raced illegally or broke the law but this had given rise to the general perception that they all posed a problem to society. 

SENSE OF BELONGING: Khairy (in red) clasping hands with one of the 1,500 Mat Rempit who gathered at Dataran Merdeka before going on a convoy around Kuala Lumpur Friday night.
He said the clubs would give the youngsters a sense of belonging and the movement would use the platform to create awareness on the hazards of negative activities like drug abuse and juvenile delinquency. 

Those who join the clubs will be asked to share this knowledge with others like them.  

He said he hoped that the clubs would help to regulate the activities of the Mat Rempit. 

“We want them to follow the law, but we need to have programmes to educate them. We will take them to the Road Transport Department (RTD) to get them to register for licences,” he said, adding that no one, including political parties, had reached out to the bikers. 

Khairy was speaking to reporters after launching the Kembara Motor Putera at Dataran Merdeka which saw more than 1,500 Mat Rempit ride around Kuala Lumpur in a convoy.  

The event was also aimed at collecting donations for victims in Lebanon and Palestine. 

He said the event was the start of an ongoing campaign that would be headed by the Putera Umno. 

He said asking the youngsters to donate and collect donations from their friends also allowed them to work towards good causes and have a sense of responsibility.  

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