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KUCHING, Jan 20: Be civic minded and learn to dispose of your waste properly instead of dumping it illegally by the roadside, says Padawan Municipal Council (MPP) chairman Lo Khere Chiang.
Lo said these illegal dumping activities has been around since he worked in the council when it was still known as the Kuching Rural District Council (KRDC).
“It is sad to say that our people have not learnt to keep our environment clean and to have that civic consciousness to stop this illegal dumping. It is a fact that we have to face today,” he told reporters when visiting an illegal dumping site located behind a shoplot in 6th Mile, here today.
According to Lo, normally, monitoring these illegal activities was not enough, as the perpetrators will instead look for another place to do it if their usual dumping spot is under surveillance.
He pointed out that if the people do not have the initiative to protect or care about their environment, it would continue to be a problem.
He said illegal dumping is an offense under By-law 18(3), The Local Authorities (Cleanliness) By-Laws, 1999, which states that any person found guilty of dumping waste illegally can be fined RM1,000 for the first offense and, in the case of a second or subsequent offense, a further fine of RM2,000 or face imprisonment for six months or both.
“Although the laws are there, if we cannot win the hearts and minds of our people to have that will and civic consciousness to stop illegal dumping, we are fighting a losing battle,” he said.
As such, Lo, who is also Batu Kitang assemblyman, appeals to the public for their cooperation to discreetly take a photo of any illegal dumping activities they come to witness and sent it to the relevant authorities.
“I believe by doing so, we would be able to encourage the public to have a high sense of consciousness to keep our environment clean, and we will be able to effectively curb illegal dumping,” he added. — DayakDaily