By Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Thurday, October 10, 1991:
If the golf-course is to be substituted by a housing project, then the present EIA report submitted by Welltra becomes irrelevant and a new EIA report must be submitted to Department of Environment for approval
DAP welcomes the decision of the Selangor State Exco to abandon the proposed golf project in Kampong Kemensah in Hulu Klang near the National Zoo.
The DAP is surprised however that the Selangor State Exco has not only decided to go ahead with the condominium project when the Department of Environment had not given its approval, but is taking the initiative to ask the developer, Welltra Sdn. Bhd., to submit a housing development plan for the area which had been earmarked for the 18-hole golf course.
The Mentri Besar, Tan Sri Muhamad Haji Muhammad Taib, seems to be making nonsense of the environmental concerns expressed by all quarters against the golf course and condominium project because it would threaten the National Zoo – for the substitution of a housing project in the area earmarked for the 18-hole golf course would cause as great, if not greater, threat to National Zoo.
Tan Sri Muhamad and the Selangor State Exco seem motivated by malice in their decision yesterday, and have taken the mean attitude that if the approval for a golf course has become too controversial for the Selangor State Government to defend, the Exco would scrap it but allow a development project which would be even more det4rimental to the continued protection and survival of National Zoo.
If Tan Sri Muhamad and the Selangor State Exco are really concerned about environmental concerns, they would have helf discussions with the National Zoo Committee on what development for the area earmarked for the golf-course would be appropriate which would not jeopardize the continued existence of the National Zoo.
Instead, the State Exco seems to be motivated by a mean and spiteful spirit to ‘teach the National Zoo a lesson’, and has decided on a course of action which though did not ask the National Zoo to shift, would create a situation of grave environmental degradation whereby the National Zoo would have no choice but to shift.
This must be the reason why the State Exco has taken the unusual decision of publicly asking Welltra Sdn. Bhd. to submit plans for housing development for the area earmarked for the golf course.
If the area earmarked for the golf course is now to be developed into a housing project, then a different Environmental Impart Assessment (EIA) report would have to be submitted by Welltra Sdn. Bhd.
This means that the present EIA report submitted by Welltra Sdn. Bhd. to the Department of Environment (DOE) is no more relevant, as it is based on a golf course project, and Welltra Sdn Bhd. must submit a new EIA report incorporating the change now proposed by the Mentri Besar.
The people are also entitled to ask whether the Selangor State Government is the government for the people, or the government for Welltra Sdn. Bhd. as it seems more solicitous about the welfare of Welltra Sdn. Bhd. than the interests of the people and the future generations.
The interesting question is whether the proposal to substitute a housing project for the golf course is at the Mentri Besar’s own initiative, or this is the result of discussions held with Welltra Sdn Bhd. held before the Selangor State Exco meeting yesterday.
In the circumstances of the case, nobody will believe that the Mentri Besar had not had prior discussions with Welltra Sdn. Bhd. before the Selangor State Exco meeting yesterday, and for this reason, the new proposal of the Selangor State Exco must be subject to the closest scrutiny from the environmental viewpoint.