Friday, February 25, 2011

MBPJ Councillor Accused Of Harassment And Intimidation

Pix courtesy of ILTC
News from Free Malaysia Today: 

A disabled trader and four others refuse to move to a congested part of the Taman Megah market

KUALA LUMPUR: Five hawkers from the Taman Megah market today filed a police report against MBPJ councillor Tiew Way Keng, accusing him of harassment and intimidation.

The five included wheelchair user Sek Nee, who last Tuesday sought the Petaling Jaya mayor’s help against what she said was pressure by other hawkers for her to move her stall to an area less friendly to the disabled.

The report alleges that Tiew yesterday threatened the five with the loss of their licences if they refused to move their businesses to stalls in the back part of the market.

This morning, Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua visited the market with Tiew and Pastor Siew Chin of the Beautiful Gate foundation, where Sek Nee used to reside. They agreed that the market should be redesigned to accommodate the wishes of all the occupants.

Anthony Thanasayan, who is also a MBPJ councillor as well as chairman of an association that helps the disabled and elderly, accused Pua of trying to bully Sek Nee into moving from her disabled-friendly stall to a more congested area of the market.

Thanasayan: Using the disabled
“This is hypocrisy at its finest,” he said of Pua’s decision to take the pastor with him to the market.
“They don’t care about the disabled; they are just politicising the situation and pitting us against each other.”
Pua said the situation was being blown out of proportion.

“According to a survey done last year,” he said, “people found that the lanes at the back were too congested for the stalls there, which sell fruits and vegetables.

Obviously these stalls attract more traffic as people take time choosing these items, which is why the egg and flower stalls at the front are being moved to the back.”

Pua also said that the back rows would be converted to be disabled-friendly, and that a new ramp would be constructed to make it convenient for Sek Nee and other disabled people. Sek Nee would not be asked to move until the conversion was done, he added.

“Her business will not suffer as it’s still a peak lane. So I don’t think she loses out at all should a move be executed. To me it looks like a prime spot.”

MBPJ is calling for a dialog on Friday next week.

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