Online petition launched urging govt to deepen all rivers in Penampang
13 Oct 2021
By Ilona Andrew
PENAMPANG: Some 2,000 people have signed an online petition calling for all rivers here to be dredged and deepened following recurring flash floods that have destroyed the homes and properties of many in the district.
This year alone and as of today, flash floods in Penampang have happened six times.
The petition which was launched via change.org by former Moyog State Assemblywoman Jenifer Lasimbang mentioned that the lower part of the Moyog River and its tributaries are heavily silted.
“This is the direct consequence of extensive land clearing for projects such as housing, large-scale plantations, industry and highways and the subsequent severe erosion caused by heavy rains. This has made the river shallow and overflow even after just a short period of rain.
“We are also appealing for strong and smart partnerships to create win-win solutions, with the community and other stakeholders (such as corporate citizens) accepting our share of responsibility,” the petition details stated.
Such participatory management mechanisms, it added, has to be developed for appropriate public awareness campaigns and education programmes and need to be put in place early.
“We have suffered tremendous loss of household properties, businesses and the mental anguished caused by the frequent floods.
“We want to see immediate action from all relevant government departments and agencies to address this issue.”
As of 11.15am, the petition garnered a total of 2,619 signatories since it launched yesterday.
Another flash flood hit Penampang and several other areas on the west coast on Monday midnight, barely two weeks since the last mud flood tragedy struck the district.
Among the areas hit by flash floods include Kampung Sugud – always the worst hit, Kampung Kobusak, Kampung Kibabaig, Kampung Dabak, Kampung Kolopis and Taman Millenium Heights Bundusan.
The heavy downpours started around 2am and went on for about five hours, causing the drainage system to be filled with water that emptied out into the Moyog River.
However, no injuries or casualties were reported so far and evacuation centres were not set up.