The aggressive crackdown by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) on graft in the public sector should be extended to corrupt high profile politicians. Investigation of politicians should be conducted in all aspects of anti-corruption legislation against those who live beyond their means and using anti-money laundering acts for money trail investigation. All this will deter others from being involved in corrupt practices.
As such, those who are involved in the corrupt practice should be brought to justice. On the political arena, the Malaysian Corruption Barometer (MCB) 2014 Survey indicated that political parties were the most corrupt bodies in Malaysia, followed by the Police and the Civil Servants. Politicians were perceived the most corrupt by replacing the police who were in the previous year’s top spot.
Quick intro to TomTom
IF your main urgent mission is to fight traffic congestion on Penang’s roads and bridges today, — which we very much believe to be the case — might not a good first step be to know more about what is going on? Here’s one that is worth a close look: The TomTom Traffic Index, starting at https://www.tomtom.com/en_gb/traffic-index/
Aerial photo taken from above article by Mr. Joshua Woo.
Commentary of Assoc Prof Ahmad Hilmy Abdul Hamid from the School of Housing, Building and Planning,of the Universiti Sains Malaysia. (See bio note below and list of scholarly publications) — commenting on a letter to the editor by Mr. Joshua Woo Sze Seng that appeared in the Star newspaper last week on 28 May on the topic, More Highways, More Cars?:
MALAYSIANS are very lucky to have freedom of expression. Anyone can write anything in the newspaper or social media, barring of course things that insult the fabric of our harmonious society.
Unfortunately, this same freedom also allows opinions to be shared by people who might be clueless as to how things work in certain areas. Yet, these people appear as if they are an authority on the subject just because they are passionate in their beliefs or they happen to shout louder than most.
When Mr. Joshua Woo wrote as an opinion piece in the Star newspaper last week on 2 May, More Highways, More Cars?: He opens with the following challenge statement:
– By P. Gunasegaram . Penang, 2 May 2019. https://m.malaysiakini.com/columns/474516
QUESTION TIME | Another mega-project which is in the process of being finalised after the RM44 billion East Coast Rail Link and the RM140 billion development value Bandar Malaysia is the RM46 billion Penang Transport Master Plan (PTMP).
As with the earlier two projects mentioned, there are a number of vital questions that remain unanswered over PTMP’s projects and the massive land reclamation project, reportedly worth an eye-popping RM70 billion (subsequently denied) to finance them. There is no clarity on how it will be undertaken, while there is a strong China element to this project as well, with a China firm being one of the beneficiaries of a major contract, as we shall see.
— Dr. Ahmad Hilmy Abdul Hamid. School of Housing, Building and Planning,
Universiti Sains Malaysia. Published 20 May 2019, Free Malaysia Today . http://bit.ly/2VUPyzx
When I read the recent article in Free Malaysia Today ‘Penang NGOs — an opposition force without accountability? — http://bit.ly/2VUPyzx — Timothy Tye and Joshua Woo’ the first thing that came to mind was ‘Ouch!’ Because even though I have no affiliation to the NGOs Timothy and Joshua were referring t,o I do follow the issues raised in particular the proposed PIL1 highway and the so-called Penang Transport Master Plan (PTPM). I would say the article summarily denied the positive contributions of Penang NGOs for example, when they successfully halted/revised the implementation of PORR and Penang Global City Center (PGCC) among others.
The primary purpose of their article I gather is to discredit the NGOs especially those who have raised questions on the viability and future prospects of PTPM as a whole coupled with the South Reclamation Scheme. By citing other ‘successful’ projects implemented over the years, readers are supposed to also accept that PIL1, PTPM and SRS will be just as successful.
Gentlemen of SRS Consortium and State government meeting in Komtar to finalise PTMP.
“All you need to know about the Penang Transport Master Plan project”
The words of the organizers and proposed implementors of the master plan, and if you go to their site using these links there, you will see both the questions and their answers. As per the Q and A for the first question below:
Why is the State Government building more highways when we are supposed to be advocating Public Transportation Vs Private vehicles?
- Answer: It is (1) common knowledge that that car ownership increase in Penang is (2) inevitable with the fast-growing young population increasing affluence. As the State Government is targeting to achieve a (3) 40:60 (public: private) mode share, road transport infrastructure is still required to (4) cater for the 60% Private transportation.
Since TDM (Transportation Demand Management) is a key pillar of the New Mobility Agenda strategy, and of our now forming-up Five Percent Challenge Climate Emergency program, it is important that the basic distinctions are clear for all. In one of our recent master classes, when several students asked me to clarify for them, I turned the tables instead and asked them, since we are now firmly in the 21st century, to go home, spend a bit of time online and come up with something that answered their question to their satisfaction. Here is what they came up with, taken whole hog from http://bit.ly/2rTxHrr (which we then lightly edited together and offer for your reading pleasure).
– Susan Loone, https://www.malaysiakini.com/news/468829. 20 March 2019
“Recommended reading for anyone who cares about Penang, Mobility and Democracy”
Activists today expressed their outrage over the conditional approval of the Penang Structure Plan (PSP) 2030 to include several megaprojects.
Consumers Association of Penang’s Meena Raman said that despite civil society organisations registering objections to these projects at public hearings organised by the state government, their views were not taken into account.
“Obviously, the state government did not listen. They have not taken into account whatever we said during our meetings and public hearings, where we clearly stated our views and objections to the projects,” she told Malaysiakini.
“The process of public hearing which the state government embarked on was merely a formality required by law, but in reality, it was just a rubber stamp to support their warped vision of Penang.
Comment from Yueh Kwong Leong in today’s WhatsApp S/P exchanges: “Kaohsiung in Taiwan was considered the most polluted industrial city in Asian. It is today considered as one of the most green city in Asia.”
Kaohsiung, yes! Good example.
For the record, we have been strategically involved in the Kaohsiung transition process in the transport sector since 2009. Among that city’s great accomplishments have been an important capacity building effort over the last decade, both within the various local government offices, but also because Taiwan has developed world level technical, planning and policy capabilities and a professional/university network that puts the necessary expertise at the fingertips of local government. These networks of competence are important factors in the advances being made not only in Kaohsiung but also a number of other cities in Taiwan. (Cities compete!)
As far as I am concerned this is THE GREAT WEAK POINT in your capabilities in Penang today – and the general chaos that has surrounded the so-called PTMP has in large part due to these persistent technical competence deficits.