‘Save Ampang Park, it has historical value’

Going all out: Edward (fourth from right) with the group of strata title owners during a media briefing on plans to save the shopping centre.

Going all out: Edward (fourth from right) with the group of strata title owners during a media briefing on plans to save the shopping centre.

KUALA LUMPUR: Some 62 registered strata title owners of the Ampang Park Shopping Centre want to start a judicial review proceedings to stay the ongoing land acquisition bid for the MRT project.

They claimed that it is the first shopping centre in Malaysia and therefore needs to be protected, especially because of its “historical value.”

They are seeking leave from a High Court to commence the judicial review proceedings against the Government and three others.

In the court papers, 39 applicants, who own more than one strata title, want to declare as invalid and unconstitutional the approval given by the state authority for the acquisition of their land for Project Mass Rapid Transit Klang Valley-Sungai Buloh-Serdang- Putrajaya link or the MRT project.

Among others, they want the notice of enquiry issued by the state authority dated Oct 22 last year to be set aside by the court.

They also want any subsequent proceedings for the acquisition of their lands for the MRT project to be declared as illegal and invalid.

The applicants also seek to stay all forms of proceedings or decisions made by the respondents, namely the Federal Territories Ministry, the Government, Federal Territory Land and Mines director or Federal Territory Land Administrator, to acquire their land until the disposal of this judicial review application.

They filed the court papers at the High Court (Appellate and Special Powers division) registry through their lawyers Jason Ng Kau and Datuk Edward Ng Boon Siong yesterday.

Edward claimed that the underground MRT project would not affect the shopping centre and that there was no necessity to demolish its building.

“Ampang Park is the first shopping centre in Malaysia and carries a historical value,” he added.

Jason added: “We support the Government for the underground MRT project but do not want the government to demolish the shopping centre which has been in business for 43 years.”

Persatuan Kebajikan Peniaga-peniaga Kecil Ampang Park Kuala Lumpur president Datuk Alam Julumiah, who also owns a travel agency and a moneychanger lot at the shopping centre, said they agreed that the MRT project should go on but did not want the Government to demolish the building.

“It is a heritage for us. If you demolish it, you can’t get back Ampang Park as it is the first shopping centre in Malaysia,” said Alam.

His deputy president Wan Kamal Izudin Wan Kassim said the MRT’s management had issued a notice asking them to vacate the building by April this year but they were currently operating as usual there.

Head of a special committee to save the shopping centre, Dr Dzul Khaini Husain, who has been a dentist at Ampang Park since 1979, said they filed a judicial review to delay its acquisition and to get a fair hearing.

“We want to see whether a mutual agreement can be done or not,” added Dr Dzul.