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City Hall keeping tabs on litterbugs
Published on: Wednesday, January 24, 2024
By: Sidney Skinner
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City Hall keeping tabs on litterbugs
SRU staff dealing with the bits of rubbish which they removed from the stones beside the seawall.
CITY Hall officers will be keeping their eyes peeled for errant picnickers, anglers and nature-lovers who wedge their rubbish between the boulders beside the seawall which extends from the Sabah International Convention Centre (SICC) to the Likas Bay Public Park.

A spokesman for the agency’s Solid Waste Management Department (SWMD) said the litterbugs risked being served with a compound for as much as RM500 under its Anti-Litter ByLaws 1984 (Amendment 2005).

He said a total of 900kilogrammes of refuse was cleared from the seawall in three separate instances between Thursday and Sunday.

“Three of staff with our Sea and River Unit (SRU) used trash pickers to ferret out the numerous foreign objects which had been dumped between the stones on January 18, January 20 and January 21,” he said.

“The volume of rubbish they found – including empty drink cartons, food boxes, plastic bottles and styrofoam cups – was enough to fill 60 gunny sacks on each of these occasions.”

The sacks of refuse from the drain being loaded onto a City Hall open truck.

An individual sack could hold up to 5kgs of garbage, according to him.

He said SRU personnel scoured the 1.7km length of the seawall between the SICC and the Park once in the morning and again in the afternoon during these clean-ups.

“We are aware that many members of public like to come here to take in the view, to watch the sunset, to enjoy the sea breeze or to fish.

“However, if they fail to be more civic minded and leave their rubbish behind, then we will not hesitate to take them to task.” 

Even tourists caught disposing of their refuse indiscriminately would not be spared, according to the spokesman.

He said those who repeatedly disregarded the agency’s calls to refrain from littering could wind up having legal action taken against them.

“They will become liable to a fine for as much as RM10,000, if they are found guilty in court.”

He said the amount of garbage removed from the seawall over the three days this month, was second only to that cleared from the monsoon drain near the Imago Shopping Mall and Sutera Harbour Resort.

“A total of 1,100kgs of rubbish was fished out by eight SRU workers during this period.

“They filled 160 sacks on January 18 and 60 on January 20. No rubbish was found in the drain on January 21.”

He said 80kgs of rubbish were cleared from the “trash boom” which straddles the drain behind the Urban Transformation Centre (UTC) in Sembulan that Thursday. He said this boom was one of several which had been set up across the Sembulan River.

A City Hall staff goes into the drain between Imago and Sutera Harbour to remove any garbage floating on the water.

“On top of the UTC, there are also trash booms at sections of the monsoon drains beside Imago and the Karamunsing Police Station.

“The booms near the Police Station and UTC were put up with funding from the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Environment Sabah.”

The spokesman said trash booms were presently being fashioned at three strategic locations across the Darau River. 

“This project is being carried out under The Twelfth Malaysia Plan.”

He said work on the “booms”, each of which measured between 40-50 metres in length, got underway late in 2023 and was tentatively expected to be completed at some point this year.

“We also intend to repair the one, which stretches across the monsoon drain in the Kolombong area and have more put up in other parts of Kota Kinabalu.”

He said City Hall was in the midst of sourcing for an allocation to implement this plan.

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