Board: Council has no power

GEORGE TOWN: The approval for a hillside development project in Sungai Ara given by the Penang Municipal Council (MPPP) is invalid, the Penang Appeals Board heard.

Counsel Datuk Lakhbir Singh Chahl, who is representing Sungai Ara residents who are against the project, raised a preliminary objection on the ground that approval could only have been granted by the State Planning Committee.

“Under the State Structure Plan 2020, the powers of approving ‘special projects’ are vested in the State Planning Committee,” he said.

He added the council had erred in approving the project’s planning application as it did not have the power to do so.

The residents were also represented by counsel Shoba Thilagam.

The MPPP was represented by its legal adviser Shamiah Bilal while Christina Siew appeared for Sunway City, the project developer. Board chairman Datuk Yeo Yang Poh set Nov 7 for the hearing to continue.

On April 8, it was reported that a group of 200 residents from various housing estates as well as representatives of Sahabat Alam Malaysia staged a protest against the project.

The residents had received a notification from the council’s Planning Department that the project was approved on Feb 21.

On June 28, state Local Government and Traffic Management Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow had reportedly said that “special projects” was an escape clause for development in areas exceeding 250ft and on hillslopes with gradients of more than 25 degrees.

Source: The Star

  1. Pen
    July 21st, 2012 at 11:50 | #1

    I like the current durian dusun. Pls don’t kill the trees. Sunway should back off.

  2. Hot
    July 26th, 2012 at 07:34 | #2

    Sunway City should be ashamed of wanting to wipe out our hills to build more luxury homes to make money for its greedy shareholders. There are enough expensive homes in Penang !

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