Govt seeking long-term solutions to floods, says PM

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Govt seeking long-term solutions to floods, says PM

The government is focusing on comprehensive long-term solutions to the flood problem to reduce risks and the number of affected locations in future, says Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

Ismail said the measures could include more flood mitigation projects, deepening rivers and other waterways and building tunnels such as Kuala Lumpur’s SMART Tunnel for flood management in high-risk urban areas such as Shah Alam.

Methods adopted by other countries could also be considered if suitable for Malaysia, including the “sponge city” concept used in China to help slow the flow of flood waters, or the river dikes of the Netherlands.

“We will seek out and discuss whatever methods that are suitable to resolve this problem, and if it cannot be implemented simultaneously throughout the country, focus will be given to districts or areas that are at high risk of flooding.

“For low-lying areas prone to flooding, we can revisit the flood resettlement programme implemented in the 1970s.

“This calls for discussions with state governments to identify suitable high grounds. The federal government can help in terms of allocations,” he said.

Ismail said this at a media conference after presenting aid under the Keluarga Malaysia flood relief mission, comprising compassionate aid of RM1,000 from the federal government and RM500 from the Pahang government, and necessities to 600 heads of households affected by floods.

“Any long-term plan involves huge costs but it helps to reduce the costs incurred by the government each time it floods.

“So far, we have spent RM1.4 billion on aid alone. This amount is expected to increase because we have not yet received the full report on the damage caused by the floods,” he said.

Also present at the event were Pahang menteri besar Wan Rosdy Wan Ismail, chief secretary to the government Mohd Zuki Ali, Pahang state secretary Sallehuddin Ishak and state tourism, culture, environment, plantation and commodities committee chairman Mohd Sharkar Shamsuddin. FMT

Govt seeking long-term solutions to floods, says PM

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