Popular fishing spot under threat

Idle river: Sungai Bahan, once a popular site for prawn fishing, is now allegedly a chemical dumpsite.

KOTA TINGGI: A popular fishing spot at Kg Belukar Durian near here has become a dumpsite for some unscrupulous people who have been discarding chemical waste.

Fishermen claimed it had been going on for almost a year and had affected their catch and income.

The fishermen also claimed that the chemical was dumped daily and turned the water green during high tide. Fisherman Razak Yusop, 62, believed the chemical to be chlorine.

“Nowadays, the river water causes a lot of skin irritation. The fish and prawn population dwindled,” he said, adding that he used to earn RM80 daily from catching fish, prawns and crabs but these days he could only manage to get RM10.

Razak said the pollution could sometimes stretch more than 15km up to Sungai Sedili Kecil, which then leads to the sea.

He said the Department of Environment (DOE) and local fisheries authority had been alerted but nothing was done so far.

A villager Nasib Tapar, 54, who rents boats to anglers, hoped the authorities would act soon.

“We are surrounded by two rivers – Sungai Bahan and Sg Sedili Kecil – which are both polluted due to either chlorine or ammonia.

“Those days people come to this area to catch udang galah (river lobster) but nowadays nobody comes and this has affected our livelihood,” he said, adding that all his 20 boats were now lying idle.

Johor DOE director Mohd Famey Yusoff when contacted said they would investigate the claim.

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