Delay irks food traders

FOOD stall operators at Darul Aman Food Court in Jalan Tun Abdul Razak, Alor Setar, are frustrated over the one-month delay in upgrading works by the Alor Setar City Council (MBAS).

More than 10 operators gathered at the food court to express their disappointment over the matter as majority of them had lost their primary income opportunity.

A steamboat stall operator Zaidi Zainol, 43, said they had to stop business operations on Nov 20 last year to enable upgrading works including roofing and the promise of old chairs and tables to be replaced with new ones.

“We were told that the works would be completed by January this year but so far, there has been no progress on the matter.

“When we approached the city council for explanation, we were only told to settle the arrears,” he said yesterday.

Mazina Mohd Yati, 50, who operates a chicken rice stall for the past 20 years, was worried as she had lost her primary source of income.

“On average, I can earn up to RM300 daily but since the closure in November last year, I had to use my savings to support the family,” she said.

Another operator Hamidah Hashim, 43, said she only received a notice from the city council to close the business temporarily from November last year to enable the upgrading works.

“I hope immediate action can be taken to ensure the smooth progress of the upgrading works as I rely on my business in the food court here,” she said.

It is learnt that there are some 30 operators at the food court which was being upgraded for the first time since its opening in July 1992.

When contacted, MBAS mayor Datuk Mat Noh Ahmad said there was a technical problem on the supply of concrete for the roofing.

“The materials are not up to our specifications, so we need to run tests to ensure the quality of the concrete for safety reasons.

“Nevertheless, we expect the works to be completed by end of this month,” he said, adding that the food stall operators were excluded from paying rental since the date they stopped business operations until end of this month.

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