Baling Floods Again Did Logging Cause It Activist Asks


 


An environmental activist has questioned whether logging on the hills near Baling Hospital caused yesterday’s flooding at Pekan Baling, Kedah.
The 6pm downpour lasted for several hours and submerged parts of the hospital, raising concerns with environmentalist Mohd Sobri Ramlee who is from Persatuan Alam Sekitar Sejahtera Malaysia and Sahabat Alam Sik.
He said a large area at the hill has been cleared and believed the work there has taken place for about a year.
He also noted that yesterday was the first time Baling residents witnessed gushing water from higher ground.
“The relevant authorities must step in to check the cause of the serious floods yesterday. Residents in Baling believe the clearing of the hills behind Hospital Baling could have caused the floods.
“The people do not want another disaster like July 4, as the poor villagers cannot afford to face the problems and the relevant authorities from the federal and state should intervene to stop a disaster similar to Kampung Iboi,” he said.
Sobri was referring to the floods in Baling in early July which killed three and damaged over 600 houses across several villages in the district.
Baling resident Abdul Aziz Mat Ludin, 60, said he was shocked to see water gushing through the area.
“I have witnessed heavy rain in the past but yesterday’s rain was unusual and I was in fear of the safety of the people as I don't want a similar tragedy like Kampung Iboi to happen in Baling again,” said the retired government worker.
“There was more than 0.6-metre-high water in Baling town during the downpour and the water subsided after several hours.
“There was more than 0.7-metre-high water at the hospital staff quarters car park which is located on the ground floor. However, it did not affect the hospital and wards,” he said.
Several families were placed at the flood relief centres opened at SK Tunku Puan Habshah and Dewan Tun Abdul Razak last night. - Mkini


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