Media Statement 
by M.Kula Segaran Deputy Secretary-General DAP Malaysia and Perak DAP Secretary
at Waller Court, Ipoh 
on 12th September 2002

Dewan Bandaran Ipoh (DBI) request to have a dialogue with the tenants of Waller Court Flats is an unnecessary exercise and the Menteri Besar should be involved to sort out the confusion 

The Waller Court Flats were built in 1962 and it houses about 500 flats with 36 shop lots. These flats were built to cater for the inner city residents who come from the lower income group.

On Tuesday night the "Save the Waller Court Flats Committee" convened a meeting to discuss about the proposed redevelopment plans by the City Council. About more then 300 tenants attended the meeting. At the meeting the following resolutions were unanimously adopted: -

  1. That we the tenants object to the redevelopment plans of Waller Court into a commercial complex and forced eviction to else where
  2. Don't agree to the City Hall suggestion for the tenants to purchase the proposed RM35, 000 low cost houses at Lahat Baru as the proposed location is inconvenient and far from the city
  3. Urge DBI to renovate repair and maintain the Flats and continue to rent or sell to the present tenants

Today these resolutions were hand over the City Hall by the Save Waller Committee Chairman En Syed Hassan b Syed Sohor and Vice Chairman En. Foong Num Kok. The DBI need to address the matters which has been raised in the resolutions.

Yesterday after the weekly state Ex-Co meeting the State Executive Committee Chairman for Infrastructure Datuk Ong Ka Chuan had announced that the redevelopment and refurbishment of Waller Court has been cancelled. He even mentioned that the state Government has not approved the conceptual plans as submitted by the City Hall.

Notwithstanding the above move the City Hall is proceeding with its own agenda.

Today the City Hall office has sent out a circular to the tenants that the dialogue planned for Monday is proceeding as schedule. What are the tenants going to achieve by attending this meeting? In any case many of the tenants of Waller Court are daily paid workers. For them to take a day off to meet the Datuk Bandar is a dent on their income. Till to date the Datuk Bandar or the City Hall staffs have stayed aloof and have no time to get to the ground to meet the tenants.

The City Hall has to be reminded that money making alone is not the primary role of a government organization. The DBI is not a private organization where profit is the most important criteria. What matters most is the welfare and convenience of the larger section of its rakyat. 

The DAP is definitely not wrong to assert that the Datuk Bandar has outlived his usefulness to the people of Ipoh. Frequently of late the Datuk Bandar's action to bring development to the City is highly questionable. In this context where is the super new building to replace the Yau Tet Shin market, which was pulled down by the DBI? The former Yau Tet Shin market land was donated by a philanthropist for the lower income to engage in business. Now the torn down place is nothing but only a car park!

The Datuk Bandar, if he is one who cares for the people would instead go and meet the people at the Waller Court after normal office hours. May be the non-elected Datuk Bandar is not concerned about welfare of the people but only his convenience. 

The said letter from the DBI reads as follows: 



Saya dengan segala hormatnya merujuk perkara diatas.

2. Berlanjutan dengan pameran yang telah diadakan pada 8 September, 2002 mengenai Cadangan Pembangunan Kawasan Rumah Pangsa Waller Court, Majlis dengan sukacita menjemput tuan/puan untuk menghadiri sessi taklimat dan dialog pada tarikh, masa dan tempat seperti berikut:-

Tarikh : 16 September 2002 (Isnin)
Masa : 9.45 pagi
Tempat : Bilik Gerakan, Tingkat 2, 
Majlis Bandaraya Ipoh.,

Sekian, terima kasih. 


Saya yang menurut perintah,
Pegawai Penilaian
Majlis Bandaraya Ipoh
b.p. Datuk Bandar Ipoh

It is rather odd for the State Executive Councillor (EXCO) Chairman for Local Government Datuk Chang to be silent on this matter. The Waller Court issue is a Local Government issue and it would have been more appropriate for Datuk Chang to handle the present issue. Datuk Chang must state whether the rumors is true that he is not able to see eye to eye with the Datuk Bandar?. Has Datuk Chang not able to sort out this issue? Has Datuk Chang been side lined and the exco member for Infrastructure Datuk Ong the more capable person to handle problems? 

The DAP is of the view that the Menteri Besar or the Exco Chairman for Local Government Datuk Chang should order that the proposed meeting with the tenants and the DBI on Monday at the DBI, which is fruitless be cancelled.