THE catastrophic fire incident that broke out at the Pulau Burung landfill in January this year has had adverse effects on the environment, and residents living in the vicinity, and has incurred substantial losses amounting to RM59.5 million for the Penang government.
State Local Government, Town and Country Planning Committee chairman Jason H’ng Mooi Lye said his top priority, among many others, is to ensure proper management of the waste treatment sites in Penang (Pulau Burung and Jelutong landfills).
“This is our main concern for now although we have many other plans in the pipeline.
“If the landfills fail, then it will have further detrimental impacts on the state, its people and the environment.
“We cannot afford to leave any room for such an incident (Pulau Burung landfill fire) to happen again in the future.
“The Seberang Perai City Council (MBSP) is now temporarily in charge of the Pulau Burung landfill until a company that is more familiar and possesses the technology and equipment to treat the waste there is appointed, H’ng told Buletin Mutiara during an exclusive interview at his office in Komtar on Sept 19.
It is learnt that MBSP took over the management of the landfill on Aug 1, 2022.
H’ng said the state will soon call for a tender for a new operator to manage the site.
Switching to a personal note, H’ng, who first entered the political scene in 2012 when he joined DAP as a party member, said he least expected to be appointed as a state executive councillor this year.
“Yes, I was happy but beyond that, I was also nervous and scared because I wasn’t sure how I would manage my time as a state assemblyman and a state executive councillor.
“Above all, I am deeply honoured to be given any role by my party, and my guiding principle will always remain unchanged, which is to serve the people with integrity.
“The appointment as a state executive councillor was a bonus because I am grateful for the opportunity to once again contest the Jawi seat in the last state election.
“When you are given the mandate by your party, it reflects your performance in the last five years at your state constituency.
“I always remind my staff at the service centre that no matter what, we put the people first before anything,” H’ng added.
H’ng was appointed as an MBSP councillor in 2013 before being elected as the Jawi state assemblyman in 2018.
He has a bachelor’s degree in information technology from the University of Queensland in Australia.
Story by Kevin Vimal
Pix by Alissala Thian