Empty Promises, Failed Elected Reps – A Voter’s Nightmare


Where is my ADUN in all these now? All I see now is her fighting for justice for Anwar Ibrahim. What about justice for her constituents and the people she is elected to represent?

P.Y. Gan

Dear Selangor State Government,

I’m lost, confused and clueless about my rights despite voting for Pakatan Rakyat. Let me tell you why.

It was late March 2012 and the news came as a rude shock to me when I first heard about the possibility of a 6 lane elevated highway coming right next to my balcony of my home which is a condominium in Damansara Perdana. This highway is now, as we all know, none other than the proposed Damansara-Shah Alam Highway (DASH).

Anybody who has been to Damansara Perdana would know it is downright absurd for an elevated highway to come through this township – we have only one narrow, two-laned dual access road plying the whole township. The hillside township itself is already very densely populated and developed with high-rise condominiums, no thanks to authorities who granted approvals leading to the green hill being stripped for more development.

However, putting that aside, it is simply unacceptable for any living being to live literally a mere 13-14 metres away from an elevated highway. Yes, some may argue that my case is not as bad as another condominium across from me, who will be having the DASH highway 11 metres from their balconies. We get 2 metres “extra”. What kind of government condones such development? BN may have done this before but PR promises us a different “people first” government.

In April 2012, together with more than 1000 residents of Damansara Perdana, we marched in solidarity with our neighbours to protest against this highway project. Then, our ADUN Bukit Lanjan Elizabeth Wong and our MP Subang Sivarasa Rasiah marched with us and assured us that the State Government would not allow such non-sensical project to come through this township and the State Government had not granted any approvals. Our ADUN said she herself was shocked when Prolintas presented to the State Economic Action Council (Majlis Tindakan Ekonomi Selangor – MTES), to which she is also an exco member of, just 48 hours before the rally that only 2 persons objected to the whole highway, when obviously our rally and also our collected petitions showed thousands of residents objecting to this highway. We were assured our objections would be seen to and represented.

Fast forward 3 years on. Where are we? We are still objecting! We had to have a resident-organised joint rally with other PJ residents to object against two highways bulldozing our beloved PJ city in January recently. We were made once again to fill up forms to give our feedback to the State Town and Country Planning Department to object to DASH which was included in the Selangor Structural Plan Exploratory Report 2035. Why are we still doing this?

As a middle-class salaried worker, I worked hard to buy this apartment of mine years back in a city I love. It is in fact, the only home I can call my own. In GE13, I voted for the representative who now stands as my ADUN because I believe she would represent my rights as a resident of this constituency and the government who will bring good changes to the State I live and work in.

During GE13, we were made promises that all tolled highways would be abolished if Pakatan Rakyat wins Selangor. Now this empty promise is no more than leaves in the wind, with DASH – a 68 years concession tolled highway, still being in the State’s long term plan and I as a resident of Damansara Perdana and PJ, still fighting for the safety of my home.

Where is my ADUN in all these now? All I see now is her fighting for justice for Anwar Ibrahim. What about justice for her constituents and the people she is elected to represent? Where is my MP? I have not heard them say a word of assurance since then. In fact, I have not seen them “turun padang” to even see us, and assure the residents that their objections are still being looked into and their rights would be protected. I could only credit efforts that there is still a group of residents whom we residents, have endorsed to represent and fight for our rights against DASH. But, they are just volunteers – not our paid ADUN who is elected to represent us.

I am angry. I am frustrated. I have lost my faith in this government. Everyday, I feel the mental torture of imagining the chaos, traffic and danger this proposed highway will bring to my life.

This highway, no matter how much Puncak Alam folks want it, gives no benefit whatsoever to us residents in Damansara Perdana. This highway was not part of the masterplan in this township. We do not need another highway here. We have enough development and connectivity here. If the developers promise the buyers of Puncak Alam and Shah Alam that they will have an alternative route with DASH, other residents in another township should not have to sacrifice for those promises. If you have to construct this highway for them, by all means but find an alternative route. We are not your sacrificial lambs. Leave Damansara Perdana alone.

We are asking for the State Government for a decision, to protect us, our lives and our homes. They have been too silent on DASH. If our Chief Minister has said that the 3 conditions the State has imposed on Kidex applies to all other highway projects, apply it then to DASH. It has not fulfilled these conditions. Do not be biased. Why the silence? We want justice too. We want you to protect your people – not corporations. Hear us. We have objected enough. 3 years is enough. Act on it.

P.Y. Gan
Resident of Damansara Perdana