‘Consult local authorities on housing projects’
by Anthony Joseph, firstname.lastname@example.org. Posted on January 31, 2013, Thursday
MIRI: Housing developers have been urged to consult and meet local authorities and agencies such as Miri City Council (MCC) and Drainage and Irrigation Department (DID) to prevent any problems arising from their projects, which could affect local communities in the area.
Sibuti MP Ahmad Lai Bujang made the proposal during a working visit to Jalan Kampung Luak 4D which is in a low-lying area prone to flash floods.
“By the end of last year and beginning of this year, the area has been flooded four times. The recent one was quite serious, lasting almost two hours. The water almost entered the houses,” said Ahmad Lai.
To lighten the mood, the MP jokingly shared that his house was among the houses affected by the flash flood.
Accompanying Ahmad Lai was Mayor Lawrence Lai and DID divisional engineer La Wee and engineers from the city council and the department.
Identifying the cause of the problem, he said: “The small drain in the area cannot cope with the big volume of rainwater from a hilly site where the housing development is being carried out.”
Some sections of the small drain that connects to a storm drain in the area were found to be blocked.
This coupled with the high volume of water would cause rainwater to overflow onto Jalan Kampung Luak 4D and inundate low-lying areas.
“As an immediate remedy to the problem, the existing drain would be deepened and widened to cope with any heavy rain during the monsoon season,” he added.
The department will also draw up a proper drainage system and lobby for an allocation for the project.
During the visit, it was understood that a retention pond near a school was proposed to minimise the incident of flash floods in the area.
However, the site was earmarked for a football field as the contractor had reassured that the area would not flood.
In this context, Miri City Council had been instructed to find out from the contractor what went wrong despite its assurance that the area was not prone to flooding.
Ahmad Lai also visited the housing project on top of the hill. Another housing development is in the pipeline adjacent to this project.
Met by representatives from the pending housing project, the MP proposed to the developer to look into the possibility of building a proper drainage system as
part of its corporate social responsibility to prevent or minimise flash floods occurrng in the immediate and surrounding areas.