Saturday, February 09, 2013

Pinggir Zaaba 12: We have no choice but to sue


Biut no one's listening: The sign in front of the affected Pinggiran Zaaba homes
PZ12 vs MRT Co.  I've been getting a bit of flak for using "elites" to describe the Taman Tun Dr Ismail folks who have decided to sue MRT Co, the government corp tasked to build Klang Valley's multi-billion ringgit mass rapid transit system. In order not to let the word cloud the issue, I shall refer to these plaintiffs from now not as "elites" but as Pinggir Zaaba 12 or PZ12.

From doorstep to train:
Just two sarees' long
As I'd noted in my earlier posting, I know some of these people personally. The other day, I was having a drink in the garden of  one of the Pinggir Zaaba homes. The home belongs to a respected member of our society, an Indian chap who spent 28 years of his life in the Navy and was already representing Malaysia in the Olympics when I was a toddler! He was saddened by the way things have turned out. 

"The MRT is a very good project for the people but it has divided my street in a bad way ... turned good neighbors against one another." 

There are 25 homes on the affected PZ street: 12 are suing while the other 13 are against suing or undecided about suing MRT Co. 

A notable member of the PZ12 would be Akramshah, the blogging son of Sanusi Junid. Akram is the deputy president of Blog House Malaysia, the same organisation where I am the Advisor. In his latest posting Does Suing MRT Co Makes Us Pinggir Za'aba, TTDI Residents Elite, Akramshah explains why the PZ12 had to sue (and why it's not political) ... 

"... the plaintiffs are suing MRT Co as they have no other choice. As the agency charged solely on this matter, MRT Co has curtailed all avenues of engagement and even the Media has had to tip-toe around this issue. Some wondered why I used my father's Tan Sri title in the press release - it  is to clearly showcase that the suit is being brought by BN supporters against a BN project. It is not political - the plaintiffs are not politicians. They are aggrieved citizens that have a case. They need the government to listen."
Read more h e r e.

p.s. Did the mainstream media "tip-toe around this issue"? I hope they do not. They must take it up seriously as it affects not just the people but also the image of the government. There are already people in PZ who are saying that it was Najib Razak the Prime Minister who had told MRT Co not to entertain any demands from the PZ residents. That, of course, is not true. But if the MSM don't report it, the pro-Opposition or/and anti-Najib news portals will have a field day. And why wouldn't they? 

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

The mainstream media is crap, thats why there is so much mistrust and lack of confidence in it.

Anonymous said...

Najib also uses his father's name TUN RAZAK.

Anonymous said...

You asked : Did the mainstream media "tip-toe around this issue"? I hope they do not.

Why distance yourself away now?

Do you not read the MSM outputs to get the true picture?

Why now wait to be spoonfed?

This is just the tip of the iceberg where BN supporters are suing BN project developers.

There are more out there Rocky.

Focus on these irritations instead of trying to make mountains out of nothing when you whack the Pakatan buggers.

PARAMESWARA

Anonymous said...

Damage control effort by rocky as everyone knows it is najib's decision.

booyah said...

they are elites. thats the truth

Anonymous said...

If they are not the 'elites' and your friends you would be the first to called them opposition scoundrels. Biggest hypocrite you are.

bru said...

Param,

The media have the resources to help resolve this deadlock between residents and MRT Co. We have seen many such situations before: when BN project developers built the LRT which you use everyday to commute to work and back, for eg; or when the BN government constructed the many highways and bridges, including the Penang bridge that the Lims so vehemently protested against back then; and when Dr M built mega infrastructures like the KLIA and Putrajaya; and many more.

There are many newspaper cuttings and news clips about how people like Halim Saad successfully tackle thorny issues like the PZ12's. Remember the story about the Indian teacher whose house was affected by some piling work and how the BN project developers moved him out to Jalan Gasing, rebuilt his home, and moved him and his things back to his new abode? What was the problem?

Newspapers and tv/radio in this country have these archives of history and knowledge to help. That's why they should not tip-toe tip-toe.

Plus we all don't trust the so-called independent news portals anymore lah. They are so pro-Pakatan not pro-Rakyat. But you know that already ...

bru said...

Anonymous said...
Damage control effort by rocky as everyone knows it is najib's decision.

3:51 pm

xxxx --- xxxx

Mo,

If it was indeed the PM's decision, I take my hats off lah. If Najib is so hands-on and has the time to micro-manage, he must be the most fantastic Prime Minister!

But alas, Ron, like Akram wrote, the buck stops with the MRT Co's CEO.

Anonymous said...

Akram can sue and won the hearts of the Anwar's infested Palace of Justice....and delay the project. BUT we the urban proletariats can invoke class action suits to claim damages amounting to hundred of millions...tak boleh tahan lagi with Klang Valley traffic gridlock...

Prof Awe Kecik

Anonymous said...

From my reading from a number of blog postings relating to this matter, I can't help but wonder, whether Najib has actually been properly briefed on this matter concerning PZ12's plight and other related parties whereunto the MRT-line will run in close proximity to these affected homes. It is common knowledge the tally is about “292 affected homes”. For a mammoth project (such as our MRT-line), it would not be unrealistic for acquisition of properties along the entire 51km to be sizeable i.e.: around 10% of the total projection costing. Anything below that 10% figure will be a bonus (in comparsion with other similar MRT projects near and abroad). On our front, I will not be surprised, if the total compensation (PZ12 and other similar areas affected by the MRT-line) that it will be anything MORE than LESSER THAN A FRACTION of ONE PERCENT of the total MRT Project. How much is SPAD and other related parties gaining from this MRT Project, I wonder? On the impending law suit, what needs to be considered would be: How much “fund allocation” is needed on compensation as opposed to court proceedings? AND also to weigh this: Who actually wins? Is it not the ONES who “milk” the cows? I’m referring to lawyers who milk the cow (not that PZ12 or MRTcorp are cows!!). Perhaps, it may be a good idea for a friendly “party” to come in to broker for this whole exercise: To see if there is any “avenue” that can be re-visited or explored such that this may be “amicably” resolved on a “win-win” basis. If “MONEY” is the main consideration, I believe that something can be done to settle matters. For example, MRTcorp gives the aggrieved parties 3; THEN, the aggrieved parties give to MRTcorp 2 and so forth and so forth. Something like that. This way, EVERYBODY wins…. Following MRT’s progress, a fairly considerable amount of MONEY would already have been spent on road shows to win public's support (rightly done so, this is a good strategic move). What more, to aggrieved parties within the protected Railway Protection Zone.

Anonymous said...

From my reading from a number of blog postings relating to this matter, I can't help but wonder, whether Najib has actually been properly briefed on this matter concerning PZ12's plight and other related parties whereunto the MRT-line will run in close proximity to these affected homes. It is common knowledge the tally is about “292 affected homes”. For a mammoth project (such as our MRT-line), it would not be unrealistic for acquisition of properties along the entire 51km to be sizeable i.e.: around 10% of the total projection costing. Anything below that 10% figure will be a bonus (in comparsion with other similar MRT projects near and abroad). On our front, I will not be surprised, if the total compensation (PZ12 and other similar areas affected by the MRT-line) that it will be anything MORE than LESSER THAN A FRACTION of ONE PERCENT of the total MRT Project. How much is SPAD and other related parties gaining from this MRT Project, I wonder? On the impending law suit, what needs to be considered would be: How much “fund allocation” is needed on compensation as opposed to court proceedings? AND also to weigh this: Who actually wins? Is it not the ONES who “milk” the cows? I’m referring to lawyers who milk the cow (not that PZ12 or MRTcorp are cows!!). Perhaps, it may be a good idea for a friendly “party” to come in to broker for this whole exercise: To see if there is any “avenue” that can be re-visited or explored such that this may be “amicably” resolved on a “win-win” basis. If “MONEY” is the main consideration, I believe that something can be done to settle matters. For example, MRTcorp gives the aggrieved parties 3; THEN, the aggrieved parties give to MRTcorp 2 and so forth and so forth. Something like that. This way, EVERYBODY wins…. Following MRT’s progress, a fairly considerable amount of MONEY would already have been spent on road shows to win public's support (rightly done so, this is a good strategic move). What more, to aggrieved parties within the protected Railway Protection Zone.

bourne identity said...

Thought the MRT line was going to be built into someone's garden.
Or maybe someone here wants to get HUGE compensations? Or maybe forcing the MRT to completely stay away from Pinggir Zaaba?
The current LRT lines were also built close to people's homes...initially..its all about noise and dust pollutions but eventually it won over the affected residents.
Or maybe the residents themselves want their area to be the ONLY place where time will stand still and no development will come in UNLESS they themselves benefit ONLY.
Its a Malaysian project for ALL Malaysians. If a huge compensation is that they want...just be FRANK lah...dont hide behind issues like environmental disturbances etc etc
When residents say that the value of their has gone down - its spells CAPITALISM....which means that WE WANT A HUGE COMPENSATION.
To build the future - we must look forward and dont use the past to as a bargaining chip ESPECIALLY if there are hidden monetary gains....

MRTco Insider said...

Anonymous at 6.21pm wrote:

"From my reading from a number of blog postings relating to this matter, I can't help but wonder, whether Najib has actually been properly briefed on this matter concerning PZ12's plight and other related parties whereunto the MRT-line will run in close proximity to these affected homes."

Answer: Probably not, as he is usually briefed on the matter by the self-proclaimed `public transport expert of the Prime Minister's Office', a certain Datuk Wan Shihab who is holding the MRTco CEO and other transport chiefs (SPAD, Prasarana, KTM, MAB, MAS) by their balls.

Even though his official title is `Director of Public Affairs' at the Prime Minister's Office, Shihab is known to directly intervene in the decision-making process in some of these entities, even sitting on the board of SPAD, to ensure that his personal `interests' are protected. I can vouch for this, as I have personally seen a top transport CEO getting a good yelling from him over a really petty issue!

His `extreme' behaviour ensures that everyone toe the line, to the extent of even telling the people that all communication to the PM must go through him. Now one really wonder if the PM truly knows what's going on with regards to the MRT project, what with this fella twisting info to his own benefit...



Anonymous said...

This will snowball if the opposition pariah dogs grab hold of this meaty issue and mangle it beyond shape. Best for Najib to take a look at this and tick off the napoleons involved.

Another example of how internal saboteurs in BN are working overtime?

Warrior 231

wahab said...

bru,

mainstream media? who do you mean, bru? The Star, NST, The Sun, The Malay Mail,TV3, Bernama, RTM?

I think the Star did have a story..The NST did not publish the latest i.e. the residents' filing the suit against MRT.

But you know..elections being round the corner, so the bosses in mainstream media sendiri punya kira not to use the story. pre-empting any such instruction or directive.

The Star seems to know how to cut it. Bernama maybe a little blur, RTM definite no-no, TV3 orbably was not aware but then they are under Media Prima..NST as you know is being run by amateurs - the wet-behind-the-ears dato jalil who is shaking in his trousers now ...

bru, you are rightr, they can do so much more and professionally.

Anonymous said...

Rocky Bru, Did you know that there were evidently quite a number of news reporters on that eventful day 5th Feb 2013 (I was there incidentally), when the Writ of Summons was filed and was registered with the Jalan Duta High Court (believe me, there were easily more than 8 (AT THE LEAST) present on that day as prepared written press statements were distributed, certainly, handed out to more than 8) and also TV-crews were there TOO but only ONE newspaper published this story (The Star - on 6th Feb 2013) and know what??? This story coverage was only carried and printed on PAGE 27 in the Nation column... UNBELIEVABLE !!!! I find this mind-boggling, inconceivable and MOST astonishing. Well! SIGH !!…. I guess that “this kind of thingy” ONLY happens in Malaysia. Truth is: The PRESS must be FREE to disseminate information of this nature UNHINDERED and ALLOW the general public to ADJUDGE. What is happening is incredibly appalling. Looks like to me… the GAG is on and someone or (GROUP) want this “ON WRAPS”. This case (if given its FREE course) will be a TEST CASE and will prove to be an “eye-opener”. Or is this exactly as what one of the petitioners’ is decrying:
“Our quiet cooperation was instead rewarded by neglect and deceit”
“The PZ residents’ predicament certainly bears merit considering the fact that their homes are within the railway protection zone under the law. Homes within the said Railway Protection Zone will be automatically deemed uninhabitable and subsequently worthless in the market. As Taman Tun Dr Ismail is a highly sought after residential locale, the arrival of the MRT project that is too close for comfort near the homes of the Plaintiffs, this will change the landscape into an area that is shunned by public, property investors and potential house buyers alike. The MRT infrastructure will deprive the PZ residents of their private and proprietary rights as well as the enjoyment of their land.”
“MRT Corporation continually refuses to acknowledge this reality. There is certainly no compassion shown towards the PZ residents which seems to pay lip service to the Government’s slogan of “Rakyat didahulukan, Pencapaian diutamakan” as demonstrated by MRT Corporation’s apathy towards the PZ residents plight” added Akhramsyah.”

Joseph Stalin said...

I've taken a closer look at the affected part of Pinggir Za'aba and see that the affected houses are those facing the end of Jalan Damansara, especially where it joins the LDP, and those facing the LDP from the junction with Jalan Damansara to the junction with Jalan Leong Yew Koh.

This part has a concrete wall separating PZ from the main road and the wall partially mitigates traffic noise from vehicles on the main road, the tunnel linking Jalan Damansara with the LDP, and to lesser an extent from the adjacent LDP flyover.

At first, I was rather curious as to why there are red and white plastic barriers only besides certain parts of the concrete wall on the PZ side but after driving up on the other side of the wall along the LDP and Jalan Damansara from the Jalan Leong Yew Koh junction, I noticed similar barriers on the divider on Jalan Damansara and red tarpaulins on parts of the divider at regular intervals thereafter.

It then became apparent that the MRT track will sit on gantry-type supports, with one pillar on the PZ side of the concrete wall and the other pillar on the divider, with the track resting on te horizontal beam between the two pillars, as there is no room on the Jalan Damansara side of the wall for any pillars.

This is unlike the single-pillar, T-shaped support of the Kelana Jaya line LRT track, instead the MRT will run above Jalan Damansara which while still closer to the houses than the tunnel, still is father away from their front gate than the length of two sarees.

I would also expect that the MRT track will have a similar type of wall to reduce the noise affecting the residents nearby.

However, since it's electrically powered, the MRT will not produce the kind of noxious exhaust fumes, unlike the huge number of motor vehicles on the road, so it's curious why the residents have put up with the main road and highway so close to the front of their homes but take issue with the MRT.

Also, their proximity to the main road and highway would have already depreciated the value of the affected properties on PZ, compared even to their neighbours on that part of PZ adjacent to Jalan Leong Yew Koh.

While it's their right to try to get the MRT re-routed away from their homes, it could result in other homes being affected and moreover it would add to project delays and additional cost, especially if they decide to route it underground, which will also lead to other complaints about risk to buildings, like what has happened in the Petaling Street area of downtown Kuala Lumpur.

Also, cost overruns give the likes of Tony Pua an opportunity to politicise the issue further.

Anyway, the LRT Kelana line runs pretty close to the back of houses on Jalan 51A/223b and the side of a bungalow on Jalan 14/47 in Petaling Jaya and nobody is complaining.

Joseph Stalin said...

Also, may I add that the London Underground, Singapore MRT and other such urban trains only run underground in downtown areas but generally run above ground in the sub-urban areas.

Just take a ride on the MRT into Singapore city from Changi Airport and the train runs above ground until a point when it dives underground, much like the Kelana/Gombak LRT does between Masjid Jamek and Ampang Park.

Also, at certain stations suchh as Punggol and Caho Chu Kang, the Singapore MRT connects to smaller LRT loops serving the neighbourhoods and this automated LRT's coaches have electrically-activated windows which go opaque when the LRT passes close to flats blocks to ensure the privacy of residents from nosy passengers.

Likewise, take a ride on the London Underground from Heathrow Airport into inner London and it will run above ground up to a point, after which it dives underground.

These are the realities of providing efficient public transit in urban conurbations such as the Klang Valley.

Not everyone will be pleased but it provides benefit for all.

Anonymous said...

UMNO proletariats shout..are we goong to pauperised Penang after GE 13....
Yes....1000x
Lets put economic sanction on Penang..
..Lets turn Penang Island into Cuba of the Orient...


Ibrahim Kati
Winnable BN candidate GE13
Buki Gantang (P)

Azlina Aisyah Khalid said...

Thank you for writing this. As one of the PZ 12, I highly appreciate it.