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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Assemblymen discover new illegal sand mine on surprise visit


NINE lorries and four excavators were seized in the Gombak District during the last two months in the wake of the increase in illegal sand-mining activities in the area.

The vehicles were seized from illegal mines in Kuang and Kundang.

However, no arrests were made.

This was revealed during a surprise visit by Rawang assemblyman Gan Pei Nei and Sri Muda assemblyman Mat Shuhaimi Shafiei recently to Taman Tun Perak in Rawang to check on the illegal activity.

Evidence: Fresh excavator tracks can be seen at the new illegal site which Gan and Shuhaimi discovered during their recent surprise visit to Taman Tun Perak, Rawang.
Mat Shuhaimi, who is a special assistant to Selangor state agriculture modernisation committee chairman Yaakob Sapari, warned all operators that those who conducted sand-mining activities illegally would be blacklisted by the state.

"We are cracking down on the illegal operators and have conducted joint operations with the police, Land Office, Road Transport Department and other authorities.

"We appreciate the public providing us with information on these acivities and hope we can bust this huge syndicate. The state is losing millions of ringgit due to illegal sand-mining and this has to stop," he said.

According to Gan, she received complaints from residents last month and visited the site several times. She also forwarded the complaints to Gombak Land Office district officer Huzaini Samsi, Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim and Yaakob.

"The illegal sand-mining in Taman Tun Perak has been taking place for more than a year. The operators conducted their activities after 5pm to evade the authorities," Gan said.

During their surprise visit, Gan and Mat Suhaimi noticed that the operators were stealing sand at a new site without obtaining any permits.

Gan said the contractor had been given two months to remove sand from a specific lot but they discovered that the contractor had excavated a new site without any state approval and Shuhaimi ordered the contractor to stop its operations immediately.

Last week, Gan had seen a contractor taking sand samples and asking the lot owners for the sand.

She had told the contractors then that any sand-mining there was illegal as the lot owners had never received any permits from the state, and warned those who encroached on the land that they would be prosecuted.

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