Monday, February 01, 2021

Peoples' Victory when court quashes Development Order? Government decisions can be reviewed and quashed by court - Taman Rimba Kiara saved?

Government department or government decisions can be overturned by the Courts, but the problem is that we need YOU and others to do the needful fast....

We have to wake up from our APATHY and no longer foolishly trust the government or our MP/ADUN - we have to make sure to insist that people be consulted and we play a part in decision making. If not, BRAVELY ask questions, appeal bad decisions, or even file Judicial Review of government decisions - This will help end all forms of abuse of power and corrupt practices.

In many laws, if you are unhappy with a government decision, then you must file an APPEAL to the Minister or the Menteri Besar within a certain number of days....and, if still not happy, you can go to court and ask for a JUDICIAL REVIEW. This is an important check in balance in a democracy, and it can cancel out wrong decisions, sometimes maybe even influenced by corruption, favouritism and other abuses of power.

The problem  with Malaysia, since the UMNO-BN era, has been that people are 'excluded' in the decision making process, and the final decisions are not publicized - kept 'secret'. Example, a logging permission granted will not be known until the logging activities commences...but with logging, many assume that all logging activities are legal and with the approval of the relevant authorities - hence 'illegal loggers' get away with it - because many blindly TRUST the government and its relevant departments...

The people's victory in stopping the development of Taman Rimba Kiara should inspire others in Malaysia to resort to such moves...

When questioned later, the government may turn around and say that the people were consulted and they 'approved' - Well, the politically appointed Local Council and even the 'politically appointed ketua kampung or JKKKK may have signed that they approve BUT all this approval happens without the knowledge and/or consent of the real people in the community..

That is WHY we need greater TRANSPARENCY - and we certainly need democratically elected Local Council and kampung/kampung baru/taman leaders...

What about our MPs and ADUNs - well, many may not even be bothered or in the know of proposed 'developments' or 'mining' or 'logging' activities in their own constituency - or they may also be 'bought' or 'ordered' to approve or keep things secret...

WRITE emails, letters and make written report - speaking simply is not enough, for the authorities can always turn around and deny saying this and that...

If you write, and you do not get replies, you can even go to Court to get the court to order the government person to reply letters.. I made such an application to court before - just a Court Order asking the DG of Immigration to reply a letter.

If a decision is made, and you are unhappy, ask for the REASONS for that decision...

WHY? It is with the REASONS that you can appeal and even go for Judicial Review..

Remember the ultimate responsibility of how Malaysia is or will be rest with you and me...

LET US NOT BE GUILTY by not doing or saying anything when those responsible in government does WRONGS..




Appeals court quashes DBKL’s approval for condo in TTDI’s Taman Rimba Kiara

A general view of Rimba Kiara Park in Kuala Lumpur. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
A general view of Rimba Kiara Park in Kuala Lumpur. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 27 ― The Court of Appeal today quashed a development order for a proposed high rise project in Taman Rimba Kiara, allowing an appeal by the residents association of the adjoining Taman Tun Dr Ismail against a government decision.

Datuk Mary Lim, who chaired the three-judge panel, ruled that there were sufficient grounds to set aside the development order dated July 13, 2017.

She also said the residents association has locus standi to challenge the earlier government decision.

In her judgment today, Lim also stated that the court could not accept the justification given by the Kuala Lumpur Mayor (Datuk Bandar) that the development order was issued to resolve the housing issue faced by the Bukit Kiara longhouse community.

“The Datuk Bandar as well as other respondents had sought to cite the Bukit Kiara longhouses and the reason to grant the DO (development order) was in their interests and their welfare. 

“With respect, we cannot see how the matter of Bukit Kiara longhouses is a planning issue. It’s a legacy or political issue which has no place in the consideration that the Datuk Bandar is required to take into account in exercising discretion per Section 22 of Act 267,” said Lim in reference to Section 22 of the Federal Territory (Planning) Act 1982 which covers development orders.

“The Development Order granted was also disproportionate to the purported resolution of the matter of the Bukit Kiara longhouses. 

“This proposed development was and is, in truth and in reality, a pure business and commercial joint-venture between two entities, that is Yayasan and Memang Perkasa, as evidenced by the clear terms of the JVA ‘(joint venture agreement),” Lim further explained.

The proposed development project was part of a joint venture between Yayasan Wilayah Persekutuan and Memang Perkasa Sdn Bhd.

The Court of Appeal also concurred with the appellant’s reasoning that the development order contradicted city development plans which demarcated Taman Rimba Kiara as a public open space, green area and city park.

Lim further stated that the proposed development would permanently affect Taman Rimba Kiara’s status as public open space and was unclear about how the KL Mayor intended to address the matter.

The Court of Appeal also found there were sufficient grounds to believe, as filed by the appellant, that a conflict of interest exists in the KL Mayor’s role as the city’s planner and as a member of Yayasan Wilayah’s board of trustees.

“The chronological records of how the Development Order came to pass, how the process and circumstances of the grant of the Development Order were facilitated, the details of the JVA and the involvement of the Datuk Bandar are amongst the paramount reasons why we find further evidence of the existence of a conflict of interest in addition to the findings of procedural irregularity. 

“No matter how the Datuk Bandar attempts to separate or distance itself from the JVA and also from the impugned decision and now claiming in the affidavits filed that the development was to relocate the Bukit Kiara Longhouses, it is undeniable that the terms of the JVA, looked at as a whole, all point inexorably to the existence of a conflict of interest,” she said.

The proposed development project was first introduced during Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor’s tenure as the Federal Territories minister in 2016. It was carried forward into the Pakatan Harapan government, where Khalid Samad fulfilled the same role. Tan Sri Annuar Musa now holds the portfolio in the Perikatan Nasional administration.

The development, which has been mired in controversy since mid-2016, was to include high-end service apartments as well as affordable housing units for TTDI longhouse residents.

The proposed development was to consist of a 17-storey block of 204 affordable housing units meant for the Bukit Kiara longhouse community, and four blocks of 41- to 45-storey condominiums, comprising 1,082 units in total. - Malay Mail, 27/1/2021

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