JOHOR BARU: The state government should not continue with its “business as usual attitude” when dealing with floods and climate change issues, says Johor Opposition chief Liew Chin Tong.
He said flash floods hit Sultanah Aminah Hospital on Aug 2, and in less than two months, the people had to face another deluge on Sunday (Sept 25).
“It threatens the lives of the public like what had happened to 14 children and their five teachers at a kindergarten in Kampung Mohd Amin here,” he said, adding that several landslides also hit several areas in Johor Baru during the incident.
The Perling assemblyman urged the government together with local authorities such as the Johor Baru City Council, Iskandar Puteri City Council, and the Pasir Gudang City Council to act simultaneously and carry out proper planning in managing the flood issue.
“Based on a written reply from Johor housing and local government committee chairman Datuk Mohd Jafni Md Shukor during the state assembly meeting recently, there were 183 flood cases under MBJB’s jurisdiction between 2015 and February this year.
“In the same period, the council has spent some RM41.6mil from its allocation to overcome floods. Even with this amount of spending, flash floods are getting worse around Johor Baru,” he said in a statement on Monday (Sept 26).
Liew also urged the government to explain every expenditure that had been made to overcome the flood issue as the people have the right to more information regarding the latest development.
He said that he had suggested during the state assembly meeting in June to set up a bipartisan committee on climate change and urban planning to find long-term solutions and draw up an effective flood and climate action plan.
“Everyone needs to accept the fact that climate change is happening all over the world and cannot escape its impact.
“All old calculations are no longer relevant. Rainfall that is said to occur only once in 100 years is no longer valid in the current context.
“Leadership and coordination from the state government level is very necessary where they should not expect the work at the local council level to be sufficient without comprehensive coordination,” he added.