SIBU: Efforts by the Sibu Municipal Council (SMC) to stop rampant littering through introducing early education has hit a snag as school headmasters and principals were not cooperative.
A dismayed councillor Rhoda Ting said at the council meeting yesterday that school headmasters and principals were more interested in pushing their students to achieve good academic results than on the council’s anti-littering education efforts.
“We have approached them with our anti-littering programme for students, but they were not keen as their main focus is on academic results,” she said.
She pointed out that the headmasters and principals invited to the meeting on the anti-littering educational programme simply failed to turn up.
“Now, we have a new Education Minister and I hope those in the state Eucation department will talk to the minister to include civic education such as caring for the environment in the school syllabus or else no matter how hard we try, it will still take a backseat to academic results,” Ting said.
She brought up the matter as she pointed out that despite persistent efforts by the local authority, littering was still rampant in the town.
“We have organised all kinds of campaigns, enforcement efforts and other initiatives but it does not help as 80% of the people here still seem to litter,” she said.
Even the increase in the anti-littering compound fee from RM20 to RM500 did not seem to deter people from littering, she said.
“Most of the litterbugs are foreigners who do it around the central market area.
“It is harder for us to nab those who dump their bulk household waste in public places, as we don’t have any evidence,” she said.
She wanted the public to take photos of these litterbugs for the council to take action.