Story & pix by Chan Lilian
FLOODS are almost a normal occurrence in the Jalan P. Ramlee vicinity which falls under the Datuk Keramat constituency.
However, the people living there are hopeful that the nightmare will soon end as their new assemblymember they voted in 2008, Jagdeeep Singh, had relentlessly worked hard to resolve the issue.
“The arrangement with the federal government was the Penang state government will clear the squatters who live along the Sungai Pinang which runs through the area and provide them housing. Meanwhile, the federal government will allocate money for the river widening under the flood mitigation project. Now, the state has almost cleared all the squatters and yet, the allocation has not been approved,” Jagdeep said at a press conference on March 2 at Jalan P. Ramlee.
The press conference was called by exco member for Local Government, Traffic Management and Flood Mitigation, Chow Kon Yeow.
Chow was there to witness the completion of clearing out structures by the riverside where the residents had been provided with alternative housing.
“Phase I and phase II have been completed. Now we are into phase III of the Sungai Pinang Flood Mitigation Project (FMP). There are two parts to the project. One is to improve the quality of the river water which costs RM333 million while the other is the flood mitigation project which costs RM321 million. Altogether, there are 161 premises and structures and under phase III, 16 units are involved,” Chow said.
“Today, we are here to witness the completion of clearing the structures for phase III. This has been a two-year effort that involves several parties and negotiations,” he added.
Although works was expected to be completed this year, the Penang state government is now awaiting approval for the allocations.
Jagdeep is confident flood problems in his constituency will be alleviated after that.
“Dhoby Ghaut to Jalan P. Ramlee to Kampung Makam and Kampung Rawa will no longer get flash flood if Phase III is completed. So, I hope the Federal government will fulfil its promise,” he said.
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