PARLIAMENT | Penang has been told to compensate the fishermen whose livelihoods will be impacted by the construction of the Penang South Reclamation (PSR) project.
Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Salahuddin Ayub said today that the state government has an obligation to safeguard the welfare of those affected.
"Since this is initiated by the state government, the ministry believes that (state government should) safeguard or compensate the fishermen accordingly," he told the Dewan Rakyat during Minister's Question Time.
It is believed that the PSR could affect as many as 4,817 inshore fishermen in Penang. A further 6,080 may be impacted by sand mining works in Perak.
The minister was responding to Reezal Merican Naina Merican (BN-Kepala Batas), who asked if compensation would be given to the fishermen to protect their welfare.
Salahuddin also urged Penang to gazette a fishing conservation zone along its coastline, from Pulau Betung to Teluk Bahang and Middle Bank.
Covering 1,821ha of state land, the PSR, which involves the creation of three artificial islands, is meant to finance the RM46 billion Penang Transport Master Plan.
Recently, the Environment Department approved the environmental impact assessment for the PSR with 72 conditions.