Response to The Sun (11 August 2010)

Date : 11 August 2010

Dear Sir/Madam,

We appreciate Mr CL Young's comment and view, which were sent via email to The Sun titled: "Where does the buck stop?" and published on 11 August 2010 on page 11.

In response to the voice of our rakyat and NGOs, the demolition work of both arches was initiated on 9 August 2010 (Monday). It was certainly a difficult decision as it involved a total cost of RM150,000 to construct the two aches. Moving forward, we have engaged the relevant parties, particularly the non-governmental organisations (NGOs) on the future plans and concept to enhance the visitor experience to Penang Botanical Garden.

We share the concern regarding the issue of public funds. In this regard, the Ministry of Tourism has taken steps to ensure that the Government does not incur additional cost in demolishing the arches. As such, the cost of rectification of the tilting arch will be utilised to offset the demolition cost of the two arches.

The Drainage and Irrigation Department through its study has identified the cause of the tilt of one of the arches. It is in the process of finalising the technical report to be submitted to the Ministry. This is critical for us to take follow-up action and determine who should compensate the Government for the cost of rectification.

The Ministry acknowledge that we have learnt from this project and therefore will further improve our delivery system by taking into account the views of relevant stakeholders and NGOs, especially when implementing tourism development project nationwide under the 10th Malaysia Plan.

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