NGOs garner 12,000 signatures against PSR project

Khoo Salma Nasution

GEORGE TOWN: Concerns that millions of tonnes of sand at high seas off Perak will be sucked up for the Penang South Reclamation (PSR) project were among the points raised in an online petition against it.

Uncertainty over the livelihood of 6,080 fishermen in Perak on top of the 4,817 inshore fishermen in Penang was also among the 20 points in the petition raised by 45 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to be sent to Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, urging him to stop PSR.

The petition, which started on May 10, had, as of Sunday (May 19), garnered more than 12,000 signatures.

It is spearheaded by Penang Forum, a loose coalition of NGOs.

Penang Forum steering committee member Khoo Salma Nasution said there was no deadline for the online petition and it would continue until the next parliament sitting.

“The lack of public consultation and detailed information on the proposal to reclaim 1,821ha of land is shocking,” she said in a press conference at the Consumers Association of Penang (CAP) office here Monday (May 20).

Khoo complained about the "lack of transparency" over the project because the 20-volume SRS proposal was "severely restricted".

She said visitors could not make copies, bring in cameras or even mobile phones, and no cost breakdown of any component of the Penang Transport Master Plan (PTMP), including the reclamation, was available.

The press conference was attended by representatives of about 20 NGOs.

“PTMP was supposed to be a transport policy and not a reclamation project that would burden the future generations," said CAP vice-president Mohideen Abdul Kader.

PSR is a project to reclaim three islands - Island A (930ha), Island B (445ha) and Island C (323ha).

This land is expected to bring in more than RM70bil for the state, of which RM46bil will be used to fund PTMP. 


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