What will happen to Residents of Kg Buah Pala Bukit Gelugor Penang?

Posted: September 10, 2007 in Freedom of Expression

If you have actually ventured into Bukit Gelugor area in Penang, you would find yourself in a completely different world. It would not seem as though you were in Penang to a certain extent. Surrounded by quaint little house, children running around playing achi-kejar, kids cycling around the area, people jogging…taking evening strolls, it actually painted a picture not so much of Penang but of of smaller towns. I had ventured around that area solely to find a place to rent as I found that area very peaceful, away from the hustle and bustle of Penang. As the road were really very narrow I often parked my car at the side and walked around the area with a close friend of mine. It was a very peaceful area, it seemed that it had gone back in time and remain static while the rest of Penang developed rapidly but no one there seemed to care, they were living out their lives quite happily. I even contemplated buying a house in that area but the lease part of it didn’t really seem very pleasing furthermore with leases most often that not your property or land area can be revoked anytime whether you agree or not and there you go left with nothing….

So today when I heard that the residents of Kampung Buah Pala in Bukit Gelugor are struggling and fighting for their right to remain on the grounds at least till compensation issues are settled, I feel very disturbed. Firstly asking people to live the house they have lived on, they have grown up on is a huge thing but trying to make them leave by force without first making sure that every issue regarding compensation has been settled is not only inconsiderate but plain nasty. The village that sits on a 2.6 hectare prime land had thought to be a gift to the marginalized Tamils that lived there but unfortunately for them it took a whole different twist altogether.

It was reported that the residents received a notice to vacate the area so that demolishing works could begin and the timinng was perfect, it was the eve of Merdeka. I guess these residents never expected to celebrate Merdeka in this manner did they? Despite negotiations on compensation issues still pending, they were required by the notice to vacate the area. Electricity and water supplies would be disconnected and the house demolished soon after.Peaceful demonstrations were held to protest and assemblyman Datuk Koay and MIC liasion committee vice-chairman were called up to settle the issue according to The Star.

What is the situation now? What has happened since? Is the state government doing anything about this issue? Where is our Datuk in this matter?

Do read<“Malaysiakini”> for a detailed update on the going-down of this 15o year old village….

I truly feel for the residents of Kg Buah Pala, Bukit Gelugor…

Source:The Star+Malaysiakini

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