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The Public Opinion Hearing Committee (POHC) last Friday 9th January was indeed a spectacular event. The press reporting in the Malay Mail and Star Metro doesn’t do it any justice. Excellent presentations were made by Gary Yeoh (for Gasing Hill) and another gentleman (from the KL side of Gasing Hill) replete with slide presentations of maps, bullet form arguments and statistics. Then came Derek Fernandez whose spirited, rapid fire presentation had the entire hall spell bound in rapt attention with jaws dropped (eerily reminiscent of the Sivan temple landslide) in shock and amazement at the numerous scandalous histories of past failed promises made by City Hall, blatant contravention of cabinet directives against hill slope development, gross violations of laws promulgated in parliament etc etc. There was enough said to hang everyone in DBKL complicit in the shameless ongoing and further planned for destruction of Gasing Hill. The fianle was the presentation by Nurul Izzah, who again recapitulated the many points made by Derek earlier.
JAC for Bukit Gasing
Be consistent City Hall, says Nurul
By Masami Mustaza, MalayMail Categories: News, January 09, 2009
NURUL: City Hall must keep its promiseLembah Pantai Member of Parliament Nurul Izzah Anwar finally made her voice heard on the Bangsar Baru “open space” issue.
Speaking to Malay Mail yesterday, she said she had met with the residents’ association, who expressed their wish for the issue not to be politicised. Instead, she will be adopting a “monitoring role” to ensure that Kuala Lumpur City Hall lives up to its promises.
“The issue regarding open space is ongoing and prevalent in other places, for instance the Bukit Gasing issue. It was announced by a former mayor that it would be a green lung but today, it is another story,” she said.
“There seems to be a lack of continuity in the structure of City Hall because decisions change with the comings and goings of mayors. I suggest that there be laws to ensure that whatever plans that were approved by a previous mayor remain and are followed through, unless they are detrimental to residents. City Hall must be aware of past promises to gazette other open spaces and fulfil them. Let there not be any exceptions to the rule.”
She also added that the rights of the land owner was not infringed upon even after looking into how Melor Travels came to own the land.
Residents also briefed her on their meeting with Kuala Lumpur Mayor Datuk Ahmad Fuad Ismail and said she was happy with City Hall’s proactive stance so far.
“I’ll hope for the best now and wait for City Hall to keep its promise.”
Nurul Izzah’s comments come a day after Malay Mail reported two former City Hall heads who denied any involvement in the land fiasco.
Former director-general Datuk Noordin Abdul Razak and former mayor Tan Sri Elyas Omar both claimed they had no hand in awarding the land title to Melor Travels, the current owner of the controversial 22,000 sq ft plot located along Jalan Maarof, opposite the Saidina Abu Bakar As-Siddiq Mosque and beside the Bangsar Selera food court.
Elyas served City Hall from 1983 to 1992 while Noordin retired in 1999 and is currently president of University Malaya’s Alumni Association..
Quite a joke, this report. If anyone takes the ‘finding of the experts’ seriously, then all hillside development – approved, in progress or otherwise should be banned immediately and legislation enacted to make approving authorities fully accountable for lack of maintenance upkeep with perhaps insurance cover to those affected by such failure — in perpetuity. Of course such expectations are just pipe dreams.
Secondly knowing that the local council culture is that of non accountability, does it really matter whether it was ‘poor maintenance’ or that some mickey mouse consultants who declared that we have ‘safe technology’ to build on unstable hills, that was the cause of the slope failure?
Wouldn’t it simply have been much, much safer not to muck about on the hill slopes? But with so much money to be made, can we blame the poor councillors for getting into bed with Satan?
JAC for Bukit Gasing
The causes of landslides in Ampang
NST Streets, Jan 10, 2009
KUALA LUMPUR: A one-year study by a team of experts found that slopes stabilised with ground anchors were not properly maintained.
The study, presented at the International Conference on Slopes 2008, identified poor maintenance and repair works as a critical issue in the Ampang area.
The study to assess and map hazards in landslide-prone Ulu Klang was commissioned by the Public Works Department’s Slope Engineering branch.
It covered an area of about 100 square kilometres from Cheras to the north of Taman Melawati.
The data from the study will be used to formulate measures and put in place an effective inspection and monitoring system in the area.
It will serve as a template for future hazard assessments and mapping projects to be carried out in other landslide prone areas.
Among the major factors causing slope failures in Ampang and Ulu Klang areas was poor maintenance of drainage systems for slopes.
There were areas with no drainage systems that could prevent surface runoff, the formation of ponds or water infiltration,
An optical remote sensing technology was also used to map out the terrain and produce a contour map of the study area.
Defects and problem areas were individually referenced according to housing estate and street name and GPS location to allow local authorities to conduct rectification