MCA has slammed the proposal by Petaling Jaya MP Lee Chean Chung that Kuala Lumpur (KL) be returned to Selangor to create a “mega metropolis”.
Calling the idea “totally unfeasible”, MCA spokesperson Mike Chong Yew Chuan said Lee’s proposal runs parallel with Kedah Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor’s proposal to return Penang to Kedah to enjoy Penang’s economic achievements as “Penang historically belongs to Kedah”.
“(Lee’s) statement that the reunification of KL with Selangor could see an increase in land banks which could be used to provide more affordable homes needs to rebuked as it reveals that the PJ MP has not done any homework at all,” Chong said in a statement today (Sept 14).
“As more and more citizens working in KL have begun moving to other states such as Selangor and even Negri Sembilan, this proves that KL is confronted by a combined predicament of land shortage, steep home ownership prices and a dense population.
“Thus, how could more land banks be obtained to construct affordable housing? KL’s traffic congestion woes are worsening, especially during weekends and public holidays. Bringing more residents into this metropolis is akin to placing the cart before the horse.”
The PKR MP had made the proposal when debating the 12th Malaysia Plan mid-term review in Parliament on Wednesday (Sept 13), saying that the move would allow for improved urban development and improve the standard of living in the Klang Valley.
Elaborating, Chong said although history records that KL was once the capital of Selangor, it is not feasible to re-incorporate KL into Selangor today.
“Due to limited land banks and as KL was overcrowded, the federal government then decided to construct Putrajaya in the late 1990s in an effort to relocate more administrative agencies out of KL to alleviate the congestion in the capital city,” Chong pointed out.
For the record, KL had achieved city status on Feb 1, 1972, becoming the first settlement in Malaysia to be granted the status after independence.
The signing of the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur Agreement in 1974 signified the official handling of Kuala Lumpur territory over to the Federal Government, which resulted in the establishment of the Federal Territory on Feb 1, 1974.
Later, KL ceased to be capital of Selangor after the city of Shah Alam was declared the new state capital.
The city, which comprises 11 parliamentary constituencies, currently comes under the administration of Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).
According to Chong, Lee’s proposal to re-integrate KL into Selangor would also mean that voters would get two ballot papers each – one for KL and another one for a state assemblyman.
“In this aspect, I agree that KL residents should and must be given a second vote but this does not mean that KL residents should vote in Selangor’s state polls or that KL should be returned to Selangor,” Chong argued.
“Instead, the Federal government should start promoting the reinstatement of local council elections in KL and return the mandate to the people.
“This will enable KL residents to vote in the best elected representatives to govern Kuala Lumpur, instead of the current status quo where DBKL has the final say.” – Sept 14, 2023
Main pic credit: The Star