THE Consumers’ Association of Penang (CAP) urges the Perak Forestry Department to investigate the recent destruction of the mangrove forest reserve in Kampung Sungai Tuntung Panchor near Beruas.
We are disappointed with this incident which not only violates the law and contravenes the National Forestry Act 1984 but also threatens the environment and affects the livelihood of the local fishermen.
About 500 fishermen in Kam-pung Sungai Tuntung have claimed that the destruction of mangroves by crab farming operators had adversely affected their income.
Their catch of crabs and shellfish, the two major sources of income, are now reduced and may soon be extinct. The fishermen used to earn about RM100 a day, but now can hardly earn RM20 a day.
CAP urges the Land and Minerals Department (PTG), the Fisheries Department and the Department of Environment (DOE) to investigate this issue and take prompt action.
We are surprised that a project that threatens the environment and the livelihood of the people is allowed to operate in a forest reserve.
We believe that if no effective measures are taken, it will have a huge negative impact on the fishermen’s livelihood and also the environment.
CAP hopes that the Perak Forestry Department reveals the findings of its investigations to the public as this is a serious social problem which impacts the environment.
We recommend that the fishermen be compensated according to their losses as their income has been affected adversely.
S M MOHAMED IDRIS