Spike in illegal dumpsites, state to thrash out the matter


PENANG has seen an alarming increase in illegal dumpsites this year.

State Housing, Local Government, Town and Country Planning Committee chairman Jagdeep Singh Deo said 12 cases of illegal dumpsites were recorded this year (from January until June) while from 2014 to 2018, there were only eight cases.

“Private hauliers or vehicles like lorries have been found to illegally dump construction waste or other waste,” Jagdeep told a press conference after attending the ‘Karpal Singh Digital Hub’ opening ceremony at SK Sungai Gelugor today.

Also present were Bukit Gelugor MP Ramkarpal Singh, Seri Delima assemblyman Syerleena Abdul Rashid, Penang Island City Council (MBPP) mayor Datuk Yew Tung Seang and SK Sungai Gelugor headmistress Fairus Ayob.

The illegal dumpsites this year were found at Desa Permai Indah (Sungai Dua), Rumahpangsa Sri Merpati, Jalan Kenari (Sungai Ara), Lebuhraya Lim Chong Eu, Penang Bowl, Marina Bay (Tanjung Tokong), Sungai Burong (Balik Pulau), Permatang Pasir (Balik Pulau), Jalan Teluk Kumbar Kampong Masjid, Tanah CMI (Jalan Batu Ferringhi) and Jalan Balik Pulau.

While he said one of the preventive measures taken by MBPP was the installation of removable CCTVs at hotspots, he urged the public to manage their own waste.

Jagdeep said he believed the lack of enforcement was a contributing factor to the rise of cases of illegal dumpsites.

Furthermore, he described the RM2,000 fine on the operator for illegal dumping in Bukit Teh by a Magistrate’s Court recently as just ‘a slap on the wrist’.

For that, he has initiated a meeting among relevant parties on July 2 to come out with a report to the state government on how to thrash out the matter.

Among the parties involved are the High Court, police, Immigration, state Environment Department, Health Department, Fire and Rescue Department, state Legal Adviser’s Office, MBPP and Seberang Perai Municipal Council.

“This is one collaboration. I don’t want to see all agencies acting in silo mentality. We’ve to be firm. We’ve to show an example. We will not tolerate this sort of behaviour (by the illegal operators),” Jagdeep stressed.

He said the RM2,000 fine to the illegal operator at Bukit Teh under a by-law penalty was not a deterrent to other would-be offenders, adding that the council would pursue the case as the waste was still not removed from the site.

Jagdeep added that provisions under other Acts provided harsher punishments, like fines ranging from RM50,000 to RM500,000 and jail terms from two years to five years.


Story by K.H. Ong

Pix by Adleena Rahayu Ahmad Radzi