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Rahman: I'll dump the trash at Bersih's doorstep next time
Published:  Sep 7, 2015 6:12 PM
Updated: Sep 8, 2015 11:16 AM

Red-faced after his officers sent a cleaning bill to the wrong address, Housing, Urban Well-being and Local Government Minister Abdul Rahman Dahlan now vows to send all the trash generated from future Bersih rallies to the NGO’s doorstep.

He said this would happen if the coalition for clean and fair election refuses to pay the RM65,000 bill by the local government for clean-up efforts for the Bersih 4 rally on Aug 29 and 30.

“If Bersih refuses to pay, the next time they hold another illegal demonstration in Kuala Lumpur, perhaps I should dump the rubbish in front of their office.

“Then, I can guarantee Bersih that I will send the rubbish to the correct address!” he said in a Facebook posting today.

Meanwhile at a separate press conference in Kuala Lumpur, Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng said the bill should have been sent to the Prime Minister’s Department (PMD) instead, which had given funding and approval for the National Day celebrations on Aug 31.

He quoted a report published in The Star ’s metro edition today, which said that Dataran Merdeka’s turf has been damaged due to the use of raised platforms, stages, and canvas coverings on the field during the National Day parade held there.

“The plastic canvas which was used prevented the grass from getting water and sunlight. It trapped heat and dehydrated the grass, thus killing it,” an unnamed lawn care expert was quoted in the report as saying.

Lim ( photo ) said based on the report, he believes that the government is trying to pass on the repair bill for the turf to the Bersih steering committee under the guise of a cleaning bill, although Rahman have yet to show any proof of the rubbish and Bersih participants were not on the turf.

“I want Rahman to instead of sending the bill to Bersih, send the RM65,000 bill to the Prime Minister’s Department […]

“I want to remind Rahman that the PMD and Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) are two different departments, so don’t send (the bill) to the wrong address again,” he said.

Bill for extra hours

Kuala Lumpur City Hall last week failed to send Bersih the bill because they mistakenly went to the house next door.

The mistake went public went Rahman tweeted a picture of the house he thought was the Bersih headquarters in Petaling Jaya, and derided it as being not 'bersih' (clean).

This prompted the Bersih secretariat to put up signs and arrows on its front gate while cheekily apologising that they could not roll out a red carpet for Rahman and his officers.

The bill by SWCorp, a ministry agency, was finally delivered today and was itemised to each square feet cleaned.

“The Bersih 4 rally on Aug 29 and 30 in Kuala Lumpur and Brickfields led to an unusual amount of rubbish in the area.

“SWCorp then instructed concessionaires to do extra cleaning work outside of their usual hours, at extra costs,” it said in a letter to Bersih.

The tax invoice by concessionaire Alam Flora noted the bulk of the costs came from the cleaning of roads.

Bersih said it will not pay the bill, as it had mobilised volunteers to clean up throughout the rally, and will challenge it in court.

Rahman insists this is a "lie".

"I have photos showing Bersih's heaps of rubbish and the clean-up job done by Alam Flora's personnel.

"Not only (did) Bersih fail to clean up after their mess, they also failed to prevent their supporters from urinating everywhere, showing their disregard for public cleanliness and decency.

"I had to instruct Alam Flora to double up their effort to clean up the urine stench to avoid ruining the comfort of Malaysians who went to Merdeka parade the next day," he said.

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