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NGOs moot jail term for developers flouting hillslope laws

There are several laws to punish errant developers but a measly fine will not deter them from repeating offences related to hillslope development, a prominent lawyer said in Penang today.

Delivering her talk on ‘Laws and Guidelines Relating to Hill Land and Hill Slope Development’ at a dialogue organised by Penang Forum, Agatha Foo proposed that a jail sentence would be more effective to curb errant developers.

“Most developers have deep pockets. A fine of RM5,000 is nothing much to them, so perhaps, even a one-day jail would be good (to teach them a lesson),” Foo said at the dialogue titled “Penang Floods: a call to action” at the Teochew Association on Chulia Street today.

Foo said existing laws such as Land Conservation Act 1960, Planning and Development Control Policy Plan 1996, Penang Structure Plan 2020 (gazetted in 2007) and Guidelines for Special Projects, 2009, could be used against developers who flout the law on hillside development...

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