Be transparent about findings, MP tells Johor govt





An affected pupil being helped to the operations centre in Pasir Gudang. — Filepic

An affected pupil being helped to the operations centre in Pasir Gudang. — Filepic

JOHOR BARU: The state government must be transparent and not allow any cover-up on the latest chemical pollution incident in Pasir Gudang.

Pasir Gudang MP Hassan Abdul Karim said the people did not want the authorities to tell them the situation was under control when it was not.

“They do not believe that anymore so do not withhold information or cover up the incident.

“I have sent an SOS to Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail asking for her intervention in this incident.

“I hope she will send experts to Pasir Gudang to study and keep the situation under control.

“I have also asked for assistance from Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Dr Sahruddin Jamal,” he said, adding that the situation was serious and must be treated as such.

Hassan, who visited the operations centre in Pasir Gudang Indoor Stadium on June 20, is now in London attending an event in Westminster.

Hassan (wearing songkok) visiting the operations centre to get updates on the situation last week. — Filepic
Hassan (wearing songkok) visiting the operations centre to get updates on the situation last week. —Filepic

As the chairman of the Malaysian Parliamentary Select Committee on state and Federal relations, he is representing the country at the event.

“I am keeping close tabs on the situation in my constituency,’ he said via text messages to StarMetro.

He also questioned the source of the pollution and the culprits involved.

“What is the outcome of initial investigations?” he asked.

The Environment Department, Fire and Rescue Services Department and National Disaster Management Agency carried out the investigations.

Hassan said before he left for London, he was assured that the situation was under control.

“It is now getting worse with more schools and people affected.

“We want answers and action taken fast,” he reiterated.

Schools and education centres with some 20,000 students and teachers within a 6km radius of Taman Mawar have been ordered closed until Thursday.

The order issued by the Johor government affects all 16 primary and secondary schools here.

The order also covered state government-­run religious schools, 69 kindergartens and pre-schools as well as Politeknik Ibrahim Sultan, which are all located in the affected area.

This is the second such incident this year.

In March, toxic pollution in Sungai Kim Kim resulted in over 4,000 people falling ill and the temporary closure of 111 schools in Pasir Gudang district.