GEORGE TOWN – Bukit Mertajam lawmaker Steven Sim today denied that no action has been taken against the screw-coating factory in Bukit Minyak.
He said authorities, comprising of local, state and federal agencies, had all taken various actions on the issue over a period of more than year.
Sim was responding to news report that a resident of Kampung Tok Suboh nearby had lodged a report with the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) on the matter.
The complainant, Ong Chin Giap, 43, said despite more than 10 reports lodged with state departments and agencies, and more than 10 press conferences, no solution was in sight for him and 10 other family members.
He claimed their nightmare started a year after the factory began operations in 2014, where he and his wife started suffering from skin-related problems, while their three children were often down with sore throat.
Sim, in a statement today said among the actions taken included, imposing operation time limit, confiscation and sealing of machineries for 11 days under Section 38 of the Environmental Quality Act, investigating emission from adjacent factories, and conducting laboratory test on the gas emission of the factory.
“It is totally a lie to say that no action was taken on the screw-coating factory issue in Bukit Minyak,” he said.
He also dismissed claims that he and his team had not visited the site.
“Government officials from various departments also conducted many site visits (there).”
Sim added that a lab test on the gas emission conducted by the Department of Environment (DoE) through a consultant found that the factory had adhered to the Environmental Regulations (Clean Air) 2014.
“The lab test were done on March 11 and 22 last year on the factory’s three chimneys and the reading of non-methane volatile organic compound (NM-VOC) was between 1.037mg/Nm3 and 5.725mg/Nm3.
“According to the regulation, the maximum standard NM-VOC allowed is at 150mg/Nm3. As such, there was no basis to take further action on the factory,” he said.
Steven said he had approached Ong on the matter and explained the finding of the factory’s gas emission.
He said he had suggested that Ong engaged an independent consultant to conduct a lab test to compare the reports if he was not satisfied with the decision.
State assemblyman Lee Khai Loon and I have offered to contribute to the cost. Till today, he has not taken up the offer nor sent us any lab report on this matter.”