KOTA KINABALU: Conservationists are riled by the mixed signals from the state government over the Tanjung Aru Eco Development project at a popular beachfront.
While Tanjung Aru assemblyman Junz Wong had earlier told them that the project would be scrapped, the chief minister recently announced that a study would be conducted before any decision was made.
Save Our Open Spaces coordinator Jeffrey Chang claimed that Wong was voted in due to Parti Warisan Sabah’s promise to scrap the project.
“But now we have the chief minister hinting that the state government may proceed with the project despite protests from conservationists and the public,” Chang said.
He urged the state government to honour its promise in the manifesto to cancel the project.
“Even if they want to develop Tanjung Aru, I think a meeting between stakeholders and the public must be held,” he said, claiming that no public forum was held on the project.
If the project is allowed to proceed, Chang said there should not be any reclamation of land and buffer zones must be set up.
Another activist, SM Muthu, said the state government must make a proper stand on the project.
The project, covering some 340ha, was to have seven hotels with 1,800 rooms, 5,000 apartment and condominium units, marinas and entertainment venues as well as a 133ha golf course.
In his election campaign speeches, Wong, the Warisan vice-president, had said that the party would ensure the project would not go on should it be given the mandate to govern the state.
On July 4, Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal had told the state assembly that it would carry out a comprehensive and in-depth study into the project planned by the previous government.