KUANTAN: Bauxite and iron ore miners here have agreed to clean up their act following complaints that their transport lorries are dirtying up the roads, said Pahang Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob.
He said that from Feb 5, lorries carrying the ore to the Kuantan Port had to use the Gebeng bypass route instead of the usual roads.
“Creating wealth is important but the comfort of the people still has to be taken care of. I have called a meeting with the mining operators after receiving complaints from the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers and the East Coast Expressway concessionaire.
“We have received good feedback from the operators and have come to an agreement that they will use the alternative route of Gebeng bypass to avoid impinging on the public’s comfort any longer,” Adnan said after chairing a closed door meeting with the mining operators here recently.
However, Adnan said the state government could not stop the ore transportation immediately since the mining operators required two months to clear its seven stockpiles in the port area.
“If we can, we really want to stop it immediately but the operators have asked for time to clear out its stockpiles. After that, there will no longer be any stockpiling of ore in the port area,” he said.
Adnan added that the mining operators would have to find new areas, to be determined by the Land and Mines Office, to store its mined ore far from the port area.
He also said the Kuantan Municipal Council would begin cleaning and repair works in the affected areas with the RM130,000 costs to be borne by the mining operators.
“I would just to like to ask investors to be patient while the matter is being sorted out. The mining companies must obey the rules that will be enforced by the Road Transport Department, police, Land Public Transport Commission and other agencies.
“The last resort is we stop all mining activities in the state if the operators do not abide. It is not as if the mining royalty we get is that much, only RM4mil to RM5mil a year,” said Adnan.