NOW that the general election is behind us, it is time for the unity government to get to work.
This also applies to the state governments, especially Selangor which has been under Pakatan Harapan for three terms.
The third tier of government known as the local council (city, municipal or district) is the one affecting people the most as it deals with their daily problems.
It is also one of the most under-performing government agencies.
I have been dealing with local councils for the past 30 years and things have not improved in that time.
When complaints about a local council’s failure to deliver services reach the state executive councillor in charge of the local government in both Barisan Nasional and Pakatan governments, hardly any response can be expected.
Now that Gobind Singh Deo has become Damansara MP, it is time he goes to the ground to meet the voters and see for himself the issues which have not been addressed in his constituency.
That way, he can better understand our problems in order to affect policies that will bring improvement at the local council.
I have been focusing on Selangor for over two years and notice that the number of illegal dumpsites here is on the rise.
Despite raising complaints to the local council for over two years, I notice that illegal dumpsites are rampant in the area where I live.
Unlike Penang which has improved on its cleanliness, Selangor has illegal dumpsites in many nooks and corners.
I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw a banner advertising a local councillor’s talk on the importance of cleanliness.
This is a sad case where local councillors are politically appointed instead of being elected by the people – a promise which Pakatan has harped on in its election manifesto.
This promise has yet to be fulfilled despite Selangor being under Pakatan for three terms.
I am hoping that the new minister in charge of local governments will look into good governance at local councils.
Legislators have to come out with policies that further improve the good delivery of local councils’ services.
Besides illegal dumpsites, I have been highlighting other issues in my area too.
Road signs are placed at locations that make no sense.
Several of these road signs are getting rusty, and if not repainted, they will soon have to be replaced with new ones.
Blue is also not a suitable colour for paint exposed to sunlight.
As a paint chemist, I know that the lower-grade pigments used in blue paint will fade away after prolonged exposure to sunlight.
I will point out a few examples which I have highlighted to Selayang Municipal Council (MPS).
There are several speed bumps in my housing estate, especially two just next to the security barrier gate, which will affect the undercarriage of some cars.
I sometimes question why there is a need for two speed bumps there when vehicles automatically slow down upon reaching the barrier gate.
According to MPS, these speed bumps follow technical specifications but something must be wrong with their specifications as they hit the lower deck of cars.
Meanwhile, a road rail guard in my housing area, that was knocked down by a vehicle some two years ago, has yet to be replaced.
Local councils are also good at turning roads into one-way streets, which may not necessarily solve traffic congestion.
A particular junction in Jalan Desa 1/5, for example, sees traffic merging from four different directions.
Jalan 5 in Desa Jaya cuts across Jalan 2, 3 and 4, and the traffic from these roads will then merge at Jalan 5 to exit Desa Jaya, and this is where accidents happen.
Until today, MPS has not carried out a proper traffic study to improve traffic flow here.
However, when the local authority converts a road to a one-way traffic system, it often claims that this was done after carrying out a proper study of the traffic flow.MPS has to improve its road planning skills.