Saturday, December 14

KPKT awaiting report on claims of abandoned fire trucks — Zuraida

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Zuraida (second left) during a working visit to the Taiping Market. — Bernama photo

TAIPING: The Housing and Local Government Ministry (KPKT) is awaiting a report from the Fire and Rescue Department of Malaysia (JBPM) regarding claims that 97 fire trucks valued at RM165 million are abandoned due to damage to components and suppliers failing to provide spare parts for the machinery.

Its minister Zuraida Kamaruddin said the report, to be submitted by JBPM director-general, would be reviewed to find out if there was any abuse of power or such before further action could be taken.

“We are waiting for the report from the fire brigade and the KPKT secretary-general. If it’s true these things occurred (abuse of power) and the vendors or suppliers failed to provide spare parts for damaged fire trucks, the government will lodge reports with the relevant authorities for investigation to be carried out and action to be taken,” she said.

She said this at a press conference in commenting on a local daily’s report on the matter after a working visit to the Taiping Market here yesterday.

The report mentioned that the fire trucks were abandoned in Selangor, mainly in Shah Alam, Serdang and Salak Tinggi.

Zuraida said her ministry had also received several complaints from other areas regarding fire trucks in poor condition being abandoned and which needed to be addressed.

Meanwhile, speaking of the Taiping Market, she said the KPKT had approved a RM9 million allocation to upgrade the two market buildings, with an initial RM1 million approved for the improvement of the design, including maintaining its heritage structure.

She said the two market buildings, housing 212 business lots and covering an area of 1.13 acres (0.46 hectares), were expected to be ready in the next two or three years.

“The upgrading of the market will be done in stages and the allocation will be distributed according to work done, without affecting business.

What is interesting is that the traders here are genuine, unlike at many markets in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor, where the businesses often change hands,” she said, adding that she was also impressed with the RM80 rental charged for each lot.

She said that construction of the two modern market buildings was in line with the rapid development in the city, especially in the tourism sector.

The Taiping Market, which was built in the 1880s, is the oldest in Malaysia.

It is divided into two buildings and located in central Taiping. — Bernama