Liew urges DBKK to slap maximum RM500 fine on litterbugs

KOTA KINABALU: Litterbugs should be slapped with the maximum RM500 fine to deter people from throwing away rubbish indiscriminately, says Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Christina Liew.

Liew, who is Api Api assemblyman, said that she had proposed to Kota Kinabalu City Hall (DBKK) to impose the maximum fine for anyone caught red-handed.

She said this in response to the large amount of rubbish found on the streets at popular hangouts in the city here over the holidays.

Liew said that she fully backed DBKK's enforcement of the Anti-Litter By-Laws 1984 (Amendment 2005) to issue compound notices (of up to RM500) to litterbugs.

"Offenders may be asked to pay a compound fine not exceeding RM500 under Section 9 of the Anti-Litter By-Laws.

"My understanding is that the fine is usually way below RM500 and could be as little as RM30. This will not act as a deterrent," she said.

Liew said offenders can even be arrested and hauled to court; and if found guilty, sentenced to do community service.

She said DBKK could learn from Singapore in handing out hefty penalties for littering under its Environmental Public Health Act (EPHA).

"The fine for the first offence upon conviction has since been doubled from S$1,000 (RM3,500) to S$2,000 (RM7,000).

"For the second conviction, the fine is up to S$4,000 (RM14,000)," Liew said in a statement on Saturday (April 13).

She thanked DBKK for cleaning up the litter and also requested for more rubbish bins in busy public areas.

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