Fed-up Penangites want state to stem their flood problems once and for all

It was this high: Razik, his son Abdor Rahman (left), eight, and his son’s friend Zamierul Zariff Zefree, eight, showing the water level during the latest flood at Razik’s sundry shop.

IT takes just three hours of rain for flash floods to surface in George Town and surrounding areas.

Penangites staying in low-lying areas want the state government to resolve the problem which has caused them so much misery.

Trader Mohd Salim, 62, who has been living in Jalan P. Ramlee for about 50 years, said his family would go on standby mode whenever there was a downpour.

“As soon as there are signs of floodwaters, we will move our electrical appliances upstairs,” he said.

Housewife Zabariah Ahmad, 67, said the flood level could reach up to 0.9m in her village off Jalan P. Ramlee following two hours of continuous downpour.

“We are tired of the floods and hope that the state government can alleviate our worries,” she said when contacted recently.

Razik Ahmad, 38, who operates a sundry shop in Jalan P. Ramlee, said he suffered losses whenever floods occurred in the area.

“I had to replace three refrigerators damaged in a flood,” he said.

Penang MCA secretary Dr Tan Chuan Hong attributed the floods to the uncontrolled development in the state.

“There is a need for proper surveys and planning to be done before any development approval can be given.

“The state is responsible for coming up with sustainable development,” Dr Tan said when contacted.

He said while there were reports of allocations set aside to counter floods, they were still happening frequently in Penang.

State Local Government, Traffic Management and Flood Mitigation Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow said that since he took over the Flood Mitigation portfolio in March last year, flood mitigation projects costing about RM100mil had been approved.

“Projects have been completed and several are in progress,” he said.

“We are now relocating squatters to make way for Phase Two of the Sungai Krian flood mitigation project in Nibong Tebal.

“Besides that, the relocation of settlers along Sungai Pinang is almost complete.

“The relocation is to make way for Phase Two of the Sungai Pinang flood mitigation project which is a Federal Government project costing RM150mil listed under the 11th Malaysia Plan.”

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