Emporium Makan traders staying put

Fewer customers at Emporium Makan as most of the stalls have rolled down their shutters and moved out. — Photos: K.K. SHAM/The Star

THREE out of five stall tenants at Emporium Makan in Klang, who were issued eviction notices in July, are determined to continue trading until the construction of the Light Rail Transit phase 3 (LRT3) line begins.

Despite having their licences revoked, Yap Sing Keong, 67, Chew Yew Ban, 49, and Lim Bee Guat, 56, said they would keep their stalls open until they were forced out.

Yap said it was unfair for Klang Municipal Council (MPK) to revoke their licences and issue eviction notices without holding a discussion with them.

“The eviction notice was with immediate effect and did not give us time to find a suitable place to relocate, ” he said.

Five operators whose stalls front Jalan Raja Hassan, had their licences revoked on Aug 22.

Wantan mee seller Yap added that fellow tenants Chew and Lim would also carry on with their business.

“I want MPK to provide us with alternative trading lots, compensation and transport to move our trading items which include the refrigerators, stoves and cooking utensils, ” he said.

Rojak buah and bubur cha cha seller Chew said he wanted an alternative trading lot.

“We have been here for at

least 40 years. All of a sudden we have to move. It will be difficult to get our customers to come to the new location.

“MPK must show us some respect, provide us with a new lot and some financial help for renovations, ” he added.

Another tenant who sells mee goreng, Tan Kok Eng, 56, also wants MPK to provide an alternative lot.

Cendol stall tenant, Tan Kui Lan, 70, said she would lose her customers once she moved out and it would be tough to build the business again.

StarMetro visited Emporium Makan and learned that out of the remaining 29 stalls, 15 were still operating.

There used to be 70 stalls doing brisk business here.

MPK president Datuk Mohamad Yasid Bidin, when informed about the stall operators’ demands, said there would be no compensation.

The council, he said, had offered the traders alternative lots at Plaza MPK in Jalan Pos Baru and at the wholesale Meru Market in Jalan Meru.

“MPK is willing to offer transport for them to move their trading items, ” he added.

With regards to the stall operators’ refusal to move out, Mohamad Yasid said he would “leave it to the LRT3 company to handle the issue.”

Meanwhile, LRT3 project director Patrick Hwang Chee Leong said the relocation of the Emporium Makan tenants was within MPK’s purview.

The food court, frequented by locals and tourists, has offered comfort food for decades.

Emporium Makan, which opened in mid-1969, is the oldest food court in Klang serving a range of hawker fare including wantan mee, chicken rice, mee jawa, lontong, satay and bubur cha cha.

It is today, one of several buildings that will have to make way for the LRT3 project.

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