(Pics credit to terraviewmedia.ca)

This letter proposes a four-point solution to the relevant authorities to solve the Tungku Beach issue, as published under the title ‘Tungku Beach’s fate hands in the balance’ in Borneo Bulletin on the 2nd April 2016.

First, it is better to disclose the development plan for the beach to alleviate the uncertainty faced by vendors and entrepreneurs operating in the Tungku Beach, given that it directly affects their livelihoods.

Second, it is for the relevant authorities to guarantee or promise that job or partnership opportunities will be created for them out of this plan with a set deadline in place, as a way to compensate the vendors of the monetary loss that came out of this decision.

Third, to select a separate location preferably in a nearby beach owned by the government and make it as a free trading zone with all the amenities and necessities provided for them to be able to operate as an alliterative to Tungku Beach.

Fourth, it is to set a ‘Townhall meeting’ with these vendors and members of the public to hear their thoughts, grievances, and voices, to negotiate and present the proposed solutions above. This inclusive approach is needed to ensure they do not feel left out and that their say is considered.

We must realize that the small businesses in Tungku Beach operate to survive. They have no guaranteed jobs or salaries. And the Tungku Beach happens to be the place where they – over a hundred of them including their families and kids – secure honest, decent income.

It is therefore preferable that the relevant authorities should provide explanations and solutions for them to solve the issue.

Being inclusive in our development approach is vital in sustaining our economy and society. Such can be manifested by including them in the discussions and offering them further opportunities and alternatives to protect their livelihoods, as set out in the four-point solution above.

I, therefore, hope the relevant authorities shall carry out the steps above, in hopes that everyone can win in the long-run.