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Tanjung Bungah landslide: Vell Paari calls on state govt to 'buck up' and 'not gamble' with the lives of Penangites

PETALING JAYA: The Penang state government has to "buck up" and "not gamble" with the lives of Penangites, said Datuk Seri S. Vell Paari.
The MIC treasurer-general said in a statement Saturday that the dangers of hilltop development had been highlighted to the state government many times but no action was taken.
"The state government must immediately issue stop work order to all hillslope developments and ensure that these construction sites are safe.
"They must also engage an independent third party to verify that all existing buildings around Tanjung Bungah hill-side are safe.
He also quoted Tanjung Bungah Residents Association chairman Meenakshi Raman as saying that whenever civil liberties groups commented on the state's hillslope developments, the Penang government would brush them aside, calling them "irrational."
Vell Paari said the statement from the Penang Island City Council (MBPP) added salt to the wound when the council said they did not know what had caused the landslide, "only that it can't be due to wet weather as it has not rained on the island for days."
"Now this in itself is alarming, that if without rain landslide can occur, how about the other buildings and high rise condos in the vicinity, are they safe?" he added.
Fourteen workers were at the Tanjung Bungah construction site when thousands of tons of laterite earth slid down from a cut slope about 10m high at about 8.30am on Saturday. As at press time, three bodies have been recovered from the landslide.
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