Friday, March 24, 2006

Another chapter in the Bolehland saga

“Choose compensation or an end to floods”


*W*T*F*??


Here’s the story: about a month ago, there was a really bad heavy storm in the wee hours of the morning, and residents of TTDI Jaya were rudely awakened by rising water… at the end of the day, nine thousand residents had been affected, and the 1,200 houses in TTDI alone had damage and losses that ran into millions of ringgit.

My initial reaction: Hey, at least there was no hiding behind “IT WAS AN ACT OF GOD” this time. (Sorrylah, I see Samy Vellu’s face every time!)

The reason for the floods (yes, the people of that area had had THREE floods within the span of a month!) wasn’t forthcoming. Took a while: then turns out some benteng somewhere was pointed to as the main culprit, I think. Okay, I admit, I didn’t follow too closely… just another Bolehland saga what… after all, common what… building violations forgotten, lack of proper infrastructure conveniently overlooked, “green lungs” destroyed, all no problem so long as the right amount greases the right palms, or the perpretator has close enough ties to some royal or political family or another….

Then, today, in the papers, the Selangor Mentri Besar, Dr Khir Toyo, is reported as saying “You want more floods in the future, or compensations? You have to choose either one, but cannot have both.”

I’m sorry, but *W*T*F*??!!

First, I have to make clear, I do NOT like the attitude of people sitting around expecting the garmen to pay for every little thing …

BUT

When something like this happens, when it’s obvious (to me lah) that these floods are the results of poor planning and development – oh wait, you DO have a plan? Then why was it not adhered to? Wait, you mean there ARE laws, rules, regulations and guidelines regarding where development is allowed, how much density is allowed, what drainage and other facilities/utilities are supposed to exist within a certain development? Then why were all these things never (or hardly ever) implemented? Hey, ever heard of enforcement?

WHY HAS THE SELANGOR GOVERNMENT NOT BEEN DOING ITS JOB?

A developed state, my a**.

Like it or not, ultimately, the responsibility lies at your feet, Mr Menteri Besar.

And now, COSTLY corrective action (RM350 mill for remedial work including deepening Sungai Damansara, building more retention ponds, improving the flood early warning system) needs to be done.

And you already want to shift blame to residents who are asking for compensation if the works don’t go ahead as planned? Are those who want compensation for their losses (caused by the state government’s negligence) going to be painted be seen as “selfish”, taking away funds needed to carry out these costly remedial works? Hellooo, it's your JOB! Oh, but wait, speaking about jobs,,, all this costly remedial work has to be done precisely BECAUSE you and your people, Mr Menteri Besar, didn’t do your jobs.

What is really getting me is this: the utter lack of accountability and responsibility.

When I see things like this, it *so* makes my blood go upstairs.

And I feel helplessly frustrated… will things *ever* change in this country?

Some reads:
  1. The Star Monday February 27, 2006 Residents rudely awakened by floodwaters
  2. The Star Saturday March 25, 2006 MB issues victims ultimatum
  3. (blog) Straightforward: Khir Toyo should resign over the flood
  4. (blog) Lim Kit Siang: Selangor - first "flood developed" state
  5. (blog( Jeff Ooi: City floods: Dr Toyo vs DID
  6. (blog) Kota Damansara Urban Wetland: Collapse of retention pond ...

The first two links will expire in due time... the others should be good :-) the last one is worth exploring too, so do spend some time there.

btw - i wasn't going to blog this weekend, just to give myself and readers a break.

shows how angry I was reading that newspaper article, I just had to share this SOMEHOW...

feel better now.

*now* i can go meet up with Veya, and later Rail, with a slightly lighter heart.

ciao!

2 comments:

  1. I swear if I didn't know you are in KL, I'd thought that you were writing about our politicians here, hehehe. Have a nice weekend, lynne... :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sounds just the way our Government is gonna be here in Canada under the wonderful (NOT) influence of Stephen Harper.

    I remember everyone being up in arms about the lack of Planning for Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans last year. But your article is a good reminder that things like floods DO happen in many places around the world, and that most of the tim it's all down to a lack of Planning, and a lack of protection. I don't blame you for being so angry, I would be too.

    Thanks for the comment on my blog (which I replied to), and have a good weekend!

    ReplyDelete

Dear legitimate commenters: all comments are welcome! My sincere apologies for making you go through the word verification hurdle, tho.

Dear spammers: please don't bother... I'm just gonna delete any spam that squeaks through word verification anyway, so why not save us both the trouble, eh?

Thanks!
*lynne*

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