Malacca Chief Minister Adly Zahari is among eight individuals from state and federal agencies to be called to testify at a public hearing into the Sungai Malacca pollution investigation at the Malacca magistrate’s court on Oct 24.
Adly (photo) and the other seven have been called to help identify the river’s pollution cause and preventative measures taken in improving the river management system, said Malacca Competency, Accountability and Transparency (Melcat) Special Select Committee chairman Damien Yeo.
Yeo said the other seven were from the Department of Environment, Indah Water Consortium, Hang Tuah Jaya Municipal Council, Malacca Historic City Council, Malacca Water Regulatory Agency and the National Water Management Commission.
"This public hearing is the first to be held in the state on the democratic principles practised under the Pakatan Harapan government. We want to show that the state government agencies are transparent, accountable and have integrity in their working processes.
"We had previously conducted pre-hearing briefings involving 10 witnesses as we wanted to have a testimony and related documents ready within three months," he told reporters at a press conference today.
Commenting further, Yeo said those with questions or wanted to air their views on the Sungai Malacca pollution case could contact Melcat before Oct 22.
The public, he said, were allowed to attend the hearing. The courtroom, however, can only accommodate up to 100 people.
He said the hearing was not intended to persecute any individual or agency, but the outcome of the investigation, proposals and opinions would be submitted to the state government to be included in the agenda of the upcoming State Assembly sitting.
Meanwhile, he said Melcat was also investigating a number of other issues, including sand mining activities off the state's waters, which had a direct impact on its people as well as the environment or eco-system.
He said he did not want the pollution issue to have a negative image on the state government and hoped it could be dealt with accordingly.