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Saturday June 29, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Saturday June 29, 2013 MYT 12:34:47 PM
by bavani m
SEVERAL community leaders have come forward to offer their services to the newly appointed Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor and his deputy Datuk Dr Loga Bala Mohan Jaganathan to help resolve Kuala Lumpur’s perennial problems involving illegal hawkers.
They said they could help provide a list of hawkers trading illegally to help rid their township of this menace which had also led to rubbish and rat problems in the city.
Tengku Adnan had said recently that Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) must be free of political interference in order for it to carry out its duties without fear or favour, and that DBKL officers had been told to disregard all forms of recommendation letters from political parties.
Tengku Adnan had said he was concerned about the growing number of illegal hawker stalls, cybercafes and massage parlours, many of which manned by foreigners.
Tengku Adnan, who is the Putrajaya MP, had reiterated that DBKL would no longer tolerate such blatant abuse of the law and that action would be taken.
“We welcome the minister’s stand in asking DBKL to ignore support and recommendation letters given to illegal hawkers from political parties.
“We are willing to help identify these illegal hawkers and help facilitate their relocation to government-run food courts,” said Bukit Bandaraya Residents Association president Mumtaz Ali.
“Illegal hawkers have encroached into pedestrian walkways and road kerbs in many parts of Bangsar, and we must stop this.
“Their presence is causing congestion, hygiene and sanitation issues,” Mumtaz said.
“Motorists are also becoming a nuisance and causing traffic congestion when they park haphazardly along the roads just to buy food from these hawkers, ” he added.
Mumtaz said many of the hawkers were found in the township, including at the Bangsar Shopping Centre area.
Brickfields Stakeholders Association, a group representing the business, residents and disabled community in the township, want all illegal hawkers in the area to be relocated.
“Stalls located on pedestrian walkways and alleys are a traffic hazard and a nuisance to the community,” said its president G. Gunabalan.
Gunabalan, who is also a blind activist, said DBKL should not allow stalls to set up tables and chairs on road-side kerbs and walkways, and also ban cooking out in the open as it was unhygienic and adding to pollution.
He said this problem had been addressed at a meeting with DBKL in 2010 and that it had assured it will no longer issue any more hawker licences in Brickfields.
However, Gunabalan said the problem still persisted.
“Many illegal hawkers have sprung up since then, and some claim to have letters endorsed by political parties and have continue to do business despite us writing numerous letters to the authorities,” he said.
Meanwhile, a restaurant operator in Brickfields, who wished to remain anonymous, wants DBKL to remove illegal stalls that are operating between Public Bank and the CIMB Bank.
“I am paying rent and assessment fees to the Government but these illegal stall owners are not only stealing my business but clogging the drains with rubbish and adding to congestion,” he said.
A resident of Brickfields, Anne Raj said the empty space between the two banks could be utilised as a parking area for motorcycles and bicycles.
“The area is busy as retail shops, banks, restaurants and clinics are located here.
“As such, the space should be used for parking,” she said.
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