A Cause for Concern

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The air quality in Menglembu, especially in areas surrounding the many factories, is bad. It is claimed that there are traces of chromium and arsenic particles in the air.

The worse affected areas are Taman Bukit Merah, Taman Impiana Adril and Taman Badrisah.

The residents had therefore formed an action committee to highlight their plight and voiced its concern to the relevant authorities but to date no actions were forthcoming.

However, a recent study by Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) over a 24-hour period, discounted the presence of harmful chemical that would impair the health of residents.

The report also stated that the air was not contaminated, as alleged. The contradiction in the report had the residents crying foul.

The MP for Sungei Siput, Dr. D. Jeyakumar, who is also the President of Parti Sosialis Malaysia, claimed that the results were totally unexpected. He credited the state health department for initiating the study but questioned the methodology used.

Dr. Jeyakumar was puzzled why the health department was the one to announce the results and not UKM.

He had posed several questions to the department but could not get any satisfactory answers. “There are traces of chromium and arsenic particles in the air which are harmful to the residents in the long term,” he said.

The Sungai Siput lawmaker hoped the authorities would view the residents’ concern seriously, as their health was at risk.

Many of the residents interviewed shared this fear. V. Sundarajoo, 62, had put up with the situation far too long.

“We can’t stand the smell and the stench emanating from the factories. The noise too is deafening.” Most agreed that something need to be done to overcome the problem.

RM