16 Jul A response to CAP’s statement on PTMP
I WOULD like to respond to Consumer Association of Penang’s (CAP) letter in an article titled “Penang govt has no power to issue bonds for mega project” (New Straits Times, July 15). CAP alleged that the Penang Transport Master Plan’s (PTMP) agreement was signed in a hurry.
The fact is that the agreement was signed after five years of preparation, studies, and consultation since 2015.If my son was born when PTMP was first proposed, he would be attending kindergarten at the time of PTMP’s agreement signing. Five-year period is a long time. Only anti-development groups like CAP advocates for the delay of development initiatives.
CAP asserted that civil society organisations have proposed a cheaper alternative to PTMP.
Studies have shown that their so-called “alternative” is not reliable and safe compared to PTMP’s elevated Light Rail Transit (LRT).
The LRT is an established system that meets mobility need without the accompanying traffic problems and safety risks posed by the “alternative” proposals.
CAP asserted that the implementation of PTMP during the current period of economic uncertainties is irresponsible.
This is simply false because precisely during uncertainties that the implementation of a long-term project such as PTMP will create substantial economic stimulation and jobs for the people.
Penang needs economic boost through development to fight against unemployment and low wages. We certainly don’t need anti-development lobbying at this time.
Very unfortunate that CAP’s letter is filled with misleading views and anti-development ideology that has no constructive value to help the society and economy to recover from the pandemic crisis. July 16, 2020.
* Tan Chen Tat is a representative of civil group AnakPinang.
* This is the opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insight.