GEORGE TOWN: The Penang Fishermen Association urge Penang Island City Council (MBPP) here to approve their request to hold a peaceful assembly at Esplanade on Nov 4.
Its chairman Nazri Ahmad said the assembly is to be held in solidarity with the fishermen.
“We sent a letter to MBPP a month ago to request to use the field at Esplanade for a peaceful assembly on Nov 4 from 10am to 2pm.
“In the letter, dated Sept 13, we requested to carry out a peaceful protest regarding the Penang South Reclamation (PSR) project, as it had deeply impacted and affected the incomes of fishermen here.
“The public assembly is held to voice out our unhappiness towards the water pollution which was getting worse and had affected the populations of marine lives, ” he said at a press conference at Pen-Mutiara Restaurant in Batu Maung on Wednesday (Oct 30).
Nazri, however, added that MBPP only replied to their letter on Oct 25 and rejected the request saying that there will be maintenance and repair works at Esplanade.
“We visited the field and found out that no work is being carried out at the time being.
“We hope that the council can delay the work and carry out the project after our programme on Nov 4.
“We had sent out invitations and it is difficult for us to cancel the programme or change venue now.
“The location for the public assembly will not disrupt public peace as it is a common area and not a working space.
“We will continue to carry out the programme at the same location, same time and date, ” he added.
Nazri also said his association will be handling a memorandum to the state Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow on Nov 4 during the state assembly, which will begin on Nov 1.
Penang Forum steering committee member Khoo Salma Nasution said the public assembly is held as they are concerned about the environment.
“We did all the preparations and invited our friends to join the programme months ago.
“We even got donations from many NGOs and also from former Bersih chairman Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan, who had supported our programme.
“As an NGO, it is our human right to voice out our objections, ” she said.
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