TBRA urges Penang govt to act against MPPP failures


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Frustrated by the silence and the perceived inaction of the Penang state government, the Tanjung Bunga Residents Association has written a letter to exco members Chow Kon Yeow and Phee Boon Poh, expressing its concerns about property development projects on steep hill slopes. The group is also calling for action to be taken against those in the Penang Municipal Council who were responsible for approving such projects:

TBRA notes the press article in today’s Star (25 June 2009) with some concern as it only talks about rectifying the steep slopes and that TBRA has not heard of any other measures to be taken despite the submissions of memorandums, letters, police reports and other meetings with State Government officials from Feb to June 2009.

We have written officially to our State Government via YB Phee and the City Council (several times – be it through our memorandum and other letters, besides police reports) stating the following: –

a. That the geotechnical report is either defective (as the geotechnical report covers only Lot 4189 while land development work is ongoing on at least three other lots i.e. Lot 4165, 4166, and 4188), OR
b. That MPPP is so slipshod or corrupt that there is no control over the land development work to the point where an NGO like TBRA has to come in to inform the MPPP of the land development work on the other plots
c. That MPPP is not able to enforce its stop work order in May and early June 2009 with ongoing blasting work still occurring. Proof via photograph available and will be made known shortly
d. That MPPP has not monitored the work site well thus causing floods, flying rock, dengue outbreak, the removal of soil/earth from site.
e. That MPPP should not have approved this project in the first place as it is in contravention of the June 2002 guidelines as issued by the Ministry of Science and the Environment.

To date, we have not received any response from our CAT state government. If at all you declare your state government to be transparent, then perhaps an official reply to address our residents concerns via our memorandum in April and out subsequent letter to you on 2 June 2009 should be forthcoming.

Just addressing the steep slopes is like giving medication to a patient for dengue without resolving the bigger issue of the source of the dengue.

TBRA expects that work to stabilise the now very steep and Class IV hillslope is to be done, However, the larger issues still persist and must be addressed failing which this error against nature and the residents will occur again and again. Stabilising the slopes is the responsibility of the developer and City Council (which approved the project in the first place). It is not something we should be grateful for. It is their job to get done. Do it quickly before it slides down and kills residents.

Thereafter, we reiterate that the issues at hand today as clearly seen via the dangerous hill slope projects such as those like Bolton Surin, Ivory, Solok Tan Jit Seng, and Diamond Villa are:-

a. a complete and total ban of all Class III and Class IV hill-slopes in Penang, and a declaration by our CAT DAP State Government accordingly. WALK YOUR TALK.
b. that action be taken against the people in MPPP who have failed their duties in approving these dangerous type of projects (e.g using the Bolton Surin as a case study)
c. that action be taken against the people in MPPP who have failed to monitor and stop the transgressions into the other lots (e.g. using Bolton Surin as a case study)
d. that action be taken against the people in MPPP who have failed to properly monitor the project to the point of causing distress to residents – floods, flying rocks, dengues etc.
e. what happens after the developer moves away? Who monitors and maintains that now Bolton and MPPP-caused slope in Chee Seng Gardens which is now so steep – class IV?
f. will MPPP be managed better, and if so, what measures have been put in place (call it SOPs, if you like) so that the grave error of approving steep and dangerous hill slopes stop once and for all?

We will appreciate a response from our CAT State Government by tomorrow (26 June 2009) as we have not received any formal reply from our state government since we submitted the memorandum and our petitions to YB Phee (and YB Chow and CM, via YB Phee) at the State Assembly on 27 April 2009 and our subsequent letter dated 2 June 2009. Should we still not receive an official response, TBRA will take whatever other action deemed necessary to highlight this matter in the press (on the inaction of our state government) as well as to make a report of possible corruption to the MACC regarding the manner in which the MPPP approved this and other similarly potentially dangerous hillslope projects.

Thank you

George Aeria
Chairman – TBRA
Residents – Chee Seng Gardens

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29 Jul 2010 11.40am

property development projects on steep hill slopes, we never learn

Look at Paya Terubong. Look at the slum looking flats. Yet there are new project still under construction.

The winding road, and the fallen stones and rocks

Just wait for the Domino to happen…

25 Jul 2009 5.13pm

this, you ask them ban, that you ask them ban..
demolish all condo and banglo and built village everywhere.. screw the development and forget about the internet. everyone goes back farming and milking cow.

god sake. being your government is like the worst nightmare ever.

George Aeria
George Aeria
29 Jun 2009 8.59am

Oh, Yes…. we will in due course of time. MPPP is under the control of State. Thus – throwing in a “Red Herring” to say that MPPP could be under Federal Control is non-sensical. All civil servants in MPPP (the licensing body of all Development projects in the State) do come under state control. They just promoted the old MPPP President to become State Secretary and he was the man who (should be held accountable for) these problems of these Dangerous Hill Slope Developments, in the first place. So who’s in control!!! MPPP is supposes to be under State Control… Read more »

28 Jun 2009 11.53pm

I’m not questioning sincerity of Anil Netto. I simply can’t accept Anil’s publication as gospel truth. Few things. One, state government got to be upfront on this matter. Two, to date, one doesn’t know for sure if the state government’s control over civil servants or all things under the purview of state government. I believe federal government does have a hand in it. George, if MPPP’s corrupt, file complain at MACC.

28 Jun 2009 8.53am

Decisive they have been. I am with the state government but are you?

27 Jun 2009 4.19pm

Developers are shunning Penang since the issue of the 4 hotels being on hold because of number of storeys allowed and this ongoing hill slope problem is also keeping them away. The stae government has to be decisive and send out the right signals or else we will forever just wait for things to happen. Decide and then get on with life….

27 Jun 2009 12.07pm

Malaysians can buy the latest handphones and notebooks/gadgets and claim to be technologically advanced and progressive, but in reality, we are really 3rd world.

Infact, worse than 3rd world. We are becoming like African countries, no law and order.

Now you know why so many professionals are not returning to Malaysia and those in Malaysia are migrating to Australia.