PERIKATAN Nasional (PN) has given assurance that it will cancel the Penang South Island (PSI) project if the coalition wins the state polls to form the next state government, said Gerakan president Datuk Dominic Lau.
According to Lau, they have consistently opposed the reclamation project even though the size of the project had been reduced from three islands to just one island.
Lau is contesting for the Bayan Lepas state seat where the controversial PSI project sits.
“If we are given the mandate to form the state government after the upcoming elections, we will continue to reject the reclamation project. We will not allow even one island to take off,” he told reporters during a visit to a fishermen’s unit in Bayan Lepas today (Aug 4).
Lau said he understood the hardship faced by the fishermen affected by the PSI project.
“PN does not oppose the development in Penang, but DAP’s idea of developing the state appears to be confined only to building condominiums and fancy homes that most Penangites would not be able to afford,” he remarked.
In May, the state government has taken the approach to reduce the size of the PSI project from 4,500 acres to 2,300 acres.
Caretaker chief minister Chow Kon Yeow said the downsize is a “49% reduction” from the approved plan and that only development works for Silicon Island will proceed.
He was further reported as saying that the reduction in size meant that only “Island A” – also known as “Silicon Island” which is only 2,300 acres wide – will be implemented in two stages while “Island B” (1,400 acres wide) and “Island C” (800 acres) will not proceed.
Despite the reduction in project size, however, a large majority of fishermen continue to call for Putrajaya to cancel the PSI project altogether.
In a protest on May 14 in Bayan Lepas, the fishermen said they did not want “even a single island” to be built and urged Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to heed their call.
In George Town today (Aug 4), a separate fishermen’s group had protested the reclamation project, once again urging Anwar to intervene and scrap the project.
Penang Fishermen’s Association (Pen Mutiara) chief Ibrahim Che Rose said the PSI project will affect the livelihood of thousands of fishermen.
“It does not matter which party wins in the state elections, but remember to care for our welfare,” he said at a press conference at Sungai Batu. – Aug 4, 2023
Main pic credit: Malay Mail