Red ant infestation at Kepong park plagues residents

Yee (right) with residents in the play area where children have been frequently bitten by red ants.

RESIDENTS of Laman Mawar Rimbunan, a gated community in Kepong, are unhappy about poor park maintenance by Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) which has led to a host of problems, including an infestation of red ants.

The lack of maintenance, residents say, has been an issue for 20 years.

Local activist Yee Poh Ping said he had submitted a letter on behalf of the residents’ association to DBKL Landscape Development and Recreation Department, detailing their complaints, on April 22.

Laman Mawar Rimbunan Residents Association secretary Steven Lim had initiated the complaint three months ago.

He said residents had marked 10 dead trees that needed removal.

“We had to hire someone to cut down a tree that was about to fall, which cost us RM500.Ants on a tree at Laman Mawar Rimbunan park.Ants on a tree at Laman Mawar Rimbunan park.

“The day after our complaint was received, DBKL came and cut down some trees but the workers only trimmed those on the outer side.

“Many of the problematic trees we had identified were left untouched,” said Lim.

He said this partial action by the local authority exacerbated the current ant problem.

“Cutting down those trees just caused ants to move to other trees.

“We have even contacted the Fire and Rescue Department. We are still waiting for the authorities’ intervention,” he added.

Resident Eng Wah Kuat, who has lived in the area for 15 years, said, “The park is where we gather to chat and relax, but sometimes ants fall on us from the trees.

“We tried luring the ants down with chicken intestines and burning them but this didn’t solve the problem.”

The infestation has also affected the children’s playground, leading to frequent ant bites.

Lim said the ants sometimes invaded cars after the rain.

The park’s outdated facilities, including the playground and basketball courts, are another concern.

“After it rains, the park floods and it takes days for the ground to dry, making the jogging paths unusable,” said Lim.

Yee urged DBKL to upgrade the park facilities, add gym equipment for the elderly and address the ant problem promptly.

“We don’t want this space to go to waste as it is for the community to enjoy,” he said.

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