Malaysiakini News

Proposal to stop coastal development off Portuguese settlement

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A proposal is to be made to the Melaka State Executive Council to stop a development project in Malacca coastal waters that is feared can tarnish the image of the nearby Portuguese settlement as a world tourist destination.

Melaka Tourism, Heritage and Culture Committee chairman Muhamad Jailani Khamis said the project had a negative effect on the settlement and the environment and also crippled the various activities of the inhabitants.

The project caused a change in the structure of the mouth of the Melaka River and siltation and jeopardised the fishing activities of the inhabitants, he said to reporters after launching the San Pedro festival here last night.

Muhamad Jailani said the developer of the project should emphasise corporate social responsibility by reducing the adverse impact of the development such as deepening the waters to check siltation and allow for smoother flow of water.

He said the inhabitants had raised the issue of pollution and damage over a long time but their lament only fell on deaf ears.

Muhamad Jailani said he did not see how the project could provide employment opportunities and how many people from the settlement could be offered jobs.

He also said that he would raise the matter of the San Pedro festival with the Tourism Ministry to seek funding for this major celebration of the Portuguese community in the settlement.

The improvement of the infrastructure at the settlement would have to be referred to the State

Housing, Local Government and Environment Committee chairman Tey Kok Kiew, he said.

- Bernama

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