Campsites nationwide need to undergo legalisation process, Dewan Rakyat told

KUALA LUMPUR: The Local Government Development Ministry says a legalisation process of campsites nationwide is needed following the Batang Kali landslide in Selangor at the end of last year.

Its Deputy Minister Akmal Nasrullah Mohd Nasir (pic) said this is to ensure campsites meet the operating rules as outlined under the Draft Camping Site Planning Guidelines that will be finalised at the end of April.

"The Selangor government has already implemented the legalisation programme for campsite entrepreneurs operating before March 15.

"Those who are operating must register with the local authorities and obtain a temporary building permit to operate, but we need to give them time and, in the case of Selangor, they are given two years to meet the conditions stipulated in the guidelines,” he said during the question and answer session in the Dewan Rakyat on Monday (March 20).

He was replying to a supplementary question by Gobind Singh Deo (PH-Damansara) on the ministry’s action against campsite operators to ensure they meet the guidelines that will be finalised later.

As such, Akmal Nasrullah hoped that other state governments can carry out a similar legalisation process to ensure campsites are safe for use.

Replying to Gobind's original question on the guidelines, Akmal Nasrullah said they focussed on basic camping activities, which use tents set up in a natural area with minimal basic facilities as well as equipment and food that participants need to bring themselves.

He said safety of a site is among the most important aspects and depends upon the distance from prohibited and environmentally sensitive areas, topographical conditions such as the gradient, and the structural strength of the soil.

"It is hoped that with the guidelines, aspects such as safety, comfort and nature conservation will be given attention in planning campsites so that incidents like the Batang Kali tragedy can be avoided," he said. – Bernama

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