Friday, August 1, 2008

The Tower of Anxiety

On July 22nd, I received a call from a my service center about some pilling work which is causing tremors besides a low cost flats. We gathered our PSM team and went to the place which is located at Bukit Semenyih. We then met around 30 residents who expressed their fear ad anxiety about a proposed telecommunication tower. We surveyed the area and found that there were no signboards A few pilling was sticking up?We had a quick meeting with the residents and decided that the next day, the residents will come together and stop the project from commencing.

The next day, the residents gathered but the people out to construct went missing. The media and the police were also around. Definitely the developer decided not to do any work on that day fearing peoples’ power. I called the Kajang Local Council and the police. The residents also lodged a police report. In a few days after that, the pilling was removed…a good sign. But I was informed later by the MPKJ that they have given an approval for the tower to be built. But the people are against it. So now it will be battle who will win Digi or the local residents?

A few questions :
1. Why was the local people not consulted by the developer?
2. Is the place appropriate for a tower to be built?
3. Why was there no signboard indicating that work is being done?
4. Was all safety precaution really taken?
5. The developer earlier told the people that the tower is just for temporary – 3 months .Now they are going for a permanent tower? Do the local residents have rights.

Believing that people when united can make big differences. We have told them that they should do a campaign if they want that piece of land to be better utilized.

The battle is theirs and the socialist party will be with the people.

Below an article which came out in the STAR

Mystery of the telco tower

Story and photos by by GEETHA KRISHNAN

PILING work carried out for the construction of a telecommunications tower in Taman Bukit Semenyih has caused a sense of uneasiness among the residents.

Homemaker Eng Yann Yann said the five-storey block of Mutiara Flats where she had lived for the past two years shook when the piling work began on Tuesday morning.

Piling work for another tower: Taman Bukit Semenyih residents protesting against the construction of a telecommunications tower in their area.

"The noise was deafening but the contractors continued their work till 6pm.

"The work area is only a few metres away from the flats; shouldn't there be a buffer zone?" she asked.

A resident in neighbouring Taman Semenyih Mewah, Chen Yee Thong, said a monopole telecommunications tower was built in the area a year ago.

"But the workers who erected the structure maintained that it was a test tower and would eventually be dismantled.

"Now, following the piling work, concrete pillars have been embedded into the ground. They are obviously aiming for a permanent structure," he said.

Flat resident Mokhtar Hussin, who approached the workers for clarification, was told that they were simply carrying out orders.

"I asked them where they were from and which company had authorised the building of the telco tower but they remained mum," he said.

Temporary tower: Taman Semenyih Mewah resident Chen Yee Thong said the monopole telecommunications tower was built in the area a year ago.

Kajang municipal councillor S. Arutchelvan said there was no signboard informing the authorities or the residents about the tower and no information was available on the company that had authorised the work.

"I have spoken to council president Datuk Hasan Nawawi Abd Rahman, who has informed the engineering department.

"They will look for those responsible," he said.

He also urged residents to lodge a police report on the matter stating the piling was causing noise pollution and no information was forthcoming about the company responsible for it.

Meanwhile, flat residents Loke Kah Weng and Yap Lee Ling said they hoped the authorities would take crime prevention measures to curb the problem of drug addicts and frequent thefts and break-ins in the area.

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