This speaks for itself. Some people are saying the government’s change of heart is just an election gimmick. But there was intense pressure from civil society groups and ordinary Malaysians upset over losing a green lung and horrified about what the traffic would be like.
It just goes to show what ordinary people can do, if they set their minds and hearts – and energy – to the task at hand.
So now we have rejuvenated civil society groups, Hindraf/Makkal Sakthi, Bersih, Protes, Gerakan Mansuhkan ISA… The socio-political landscape has definitely changed. Many believed that Reformasi in 1998-2001 failed to achieve anything – but the seeds were planted then, and much earlier by all those concerned Malaysians over the years who believed in justice but never lived to see the fruit.
DEVELOPMENT-MALAYSIA: Civil Society Stalls Eight Billion Dollar Project
By Anil Netto
PENANG, Jan 25 (IPS) – Civil society groups here are mulling their next move after having stalled a massive, private project to build close to 40 high-rise towers on a precious green lung on this land-scarce Malaysian island.
An intense campaign in the preceding months finally forced the Penang state government to announce last week it was effectively stalling the 25 billion ringgit (eight billion US dollar) project.