APPROACHABLE and friendly is how Kuala Lumpur mayor Datuk Seri Mahadi Che Ngah has been described by those who have met him.
The 13th and current mayor, who assumed office on Oct 1, 2020, has risen to many challenges during his two-and-a-half-year tenure at the helm of Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).
One notable challenge for Mahadi came at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic in addressing the concerns and needs of city folk.
Among other things, he implemented the Kuala Lumpur Prihatin free temporary licence for traders and opened up more business opportunities.
He also addressed flash flood concerns through the Flash Flood Mitigation Action Plan 2022.
With Mahadi’s tenure ending on March 31, talk is rife that it is likely to be extended for another six months.
Mahadi holds a bachelor’s degree in town planning from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia and a master’s degree in the same field from University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland.
After serving DBKL for more than 35 years, he retired as its executive director (Planning) in 2018.
In 2020, he returned to serve as advisor to then mayor Datuk Seri Nor Hisham Ahmad Dahlan on matters pertaining to the Draft Kuala Lumpur City Plan 2020.
When Nor Hisham’s contract expired, Mahadi was appointed mayor.
Kuala Lumpur Bebas Asap Rokok (KLBAR) committee deputy chairman Chandrakant Patel said Mahadi is a people-friendly mayor.
“Whenever we discuss KLBAR programmes and strategies, he is always there to listen to our ideas.
“Having started off as a DBKL officer and risen through the ranks, he understands its operations inside and out.
“It will benefit Kuala Lumpur folk if his tenure is extended,” said Chandrakant, who is former DBKL Health deputy director.
Malaysian Hawkers and Traders Association Coalition president Datuk Rosli Sulaiman told StarMetro that Mahadi has carried out his responsibilities well.
“Some of the initiatives he introduced through DBKL, such as the Ramadan Bazaar Food Safety and Zero Single-use Plastic campaign, have benefitted the people and environment.
“He also cares for Kuala Lumpur traders and pushes for a more liveable and sustainable city.
“Mahadi is always on the ground listening to the people. I believe he will be effective in carrying out his duties if his tenure as mayor is extended,” Rosli added.