Land office response at public hearing leaves stakeholders stumped

Ahmad Fuad taking questions at the hearing regarding the de-gazettement of Kampung Bohol flood retention pond.

POOR feedback from Kuala Lumpur Land and Mines Office (PTGWP) to questions on the proposed revocation of the public-use status for the Kampung Bohol flood retention pond in Seputeh, has left stakeholders disappointed.

Over 100 people attended a public hearing on the proposed revocation of the stormwater management pond’s public-use status yesterday, held at PTGWP premises in Jalan Sultan Hishamuddin.

Attendees described answers from the PTGWP deputy director Ahmad Fuad Mustaffa as general and lacking detail.

“There was no information to basic questions like whether the developer had paid the premium,” said Taman Desa Residents Association chairman Wong Chan Choy.

“I asked because if premium was paid, why is PTGWP having this session with us? The land is as good as gone,” Wong added.

Save Kuala Lumpur Coalition chairman Datuk M. Ali said a representative from Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) and the Drainage and Irrigation Department (DID) should have been present to answer technical questions.

“Otherwise, what is the point of these sessions?” Ali queried.

Former Kuala Lumpur mayor Datuk Seri Nor Hisham Ahmad Dahlan said that instead of revoking the land status and regazetting it, the government should upgrade the flood retention pond.

“Use government funds and get DID to deepen the pond. We all know the developer is supposed to upgrade the pond with its RM40mil allocation, but it is unacceptable that the developer is only paying a premium of RM41.7mil for a huge government land,” he said.

When contacted, former Federal Territories minister Khalid Abdul Samad, who sent representatives from Federal Territories Amanah as he could not attend the briefing himself, said, “I think this decision (to alienate flood retention pond land for development) was made haphazardly with no prior engagement.

“The elected representative (Seputeh MP) was not consulted.

“Decisions regarding the redevelopment of flood retention ponds must be thought out and thoroughly discussed with stakeholders.

“It should not be presented as a surprise in the local plan.

“The local council needs a structural revamp.

“DBKL has no local councillors, neither elected nor appointed, and this should change.

“This could be the reason for such oversight,” said Khalid.

StarMetro reported on April 29 that new development plans had emerged for Kuala Lumpur’s second largest flood retention pond, nearly a year after the Federal Government stopped a similar proposal by the previous administration to allocate the land to a private developer.

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