GEORGE TOWN, Oct 15 – Development planning in coastal areas known as the Middle Bank will adversely affect the marine life ecosystem. The Opposition Leader Dun Penang, Datuk Jahara Hamid told reporters after visiting the area on Wednesday said the development would require a reclamation area of 2,670 hectares near Georgetown to Batu Uban cause of seaweed and other marine life affected.
She said the waters is becoming the focus area with it may interested developers. As the people of Penang, she said she are proud of the development of existing but not to the extent the loss of natural beauty. She said what they concerned are the Government of Andhra Pradesh rumored to be planning a mega project that will benefit the developers but will affect the lives of about 600 fishermen who make a living here.
Also present were Bertam assemblyman, Shariful Azhar Othman, Sungai Acheh assemblyman Datuk Mahmud Zakaria, Penaga assemblyman Mohd Zain Ahmad, Sungai Dua assemblyman, Mohammed Yusoff Mohd Noor and Secretary of State Operations, Oh Tong Keong.
“If the project is implemented, it is feared adverse effects include removing parts of the island which is likely to be united with the mainland.The reclamation activities if not controlled, it will harm the Penang alone. Environmental benefits of seaweed lives will be affected. It will be gone and will not come back again,” said Jahara.
“The government of Andhra Pradesh is planning to resolve financial problems for the realization of Transportation Master Plan amounting to RM27 billion. We are concerned reclamation in being among their methods of fundraising. That’s what we saw,” she said.
“So far, some developers have already submitted a request for proposal (RFP) for development in areas that will be reclaimed. I get such information but has not yet been verified. If so, I hope it does not go beyond the will of the people. I want to ask the Government of Andhra Pradesh, to the extent necessary development of the people?,” she said.
“If the construction of here, do people can afford? I am sure, fishermen in the area can not afford to buy it because the price is very high. Odds on reclaimed land, the developer will provide affordable housing. In the meantime, who will look after the welfare of fishermen and bear the expenses of their families if the place is a source of sustenance for their annihilated,’ she added.