Iskandar Puteri councillors want Johor MB to curb abuse by local authorities

Ben Tan
Iskandar Puteri City Council (MBIP) councillors’ representative Mohd Azam Mektar (centre) today called for periodic monitoring of local government authorities’ management. — Picture by Ben Tan

ISKANDAR PUTERI, June 12 — A total of 24 Iskandar Puteri City Council (MBIP) councillors handed over a memorandum to Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Dr Sahruddin Jamal here today, calling for periodic monitoring of local government authorities’ management to ensure that their decisions are taken into consideration and to curb power abuse.

Led by its Gelang Patah Zone 9 councillor Mohd Azam Mektar, the memorandum is a follow-up to last month’s allegation of power abuse by MBIP mayor Datuk Adib Azhari Daud over the Taman Nusantara Ramadan Bazaar in Gelang Patah licensing issue.

The councillors claimed that Adib did not follow the official decision regarding the permit and business licence of the Ramadan Bazaar.

The memorandum received the support of all MBIP councillors, whose group also described Adib’s act as betraying Malay traders involved with the Ramadan Bazaar at Taman Nusantara.

Mohd Azam, who also represented the councillors, said Adib had failed to publicly deny the matter despite being pressured and given time to do so more than 15 days ago by the MBIP councillors.

He said Adib’s act on staying silent over the matter had also further raised the issue of power abuse among his ranks.

“This action is a form of sabotage against MBIP councillors and also the Johor Pakatan Harapan (PH) administration,” said Mohd Azam to the media after handing over the memorandum to Dr Sahruddin at the Johor mentri besar’s office in Kota Iskandar here today.

Mohd Azam said they feared that such actions by the mayor demonstrated that the government’s administration can be manipulated and can also erode the people’s trust in civil servants, as well as undermining the overall image of the state government.

He also claimed that Adib failed to cooperate well with MBIP councillors on other matters.

However, Mohd Azam assured that all MBIP councillors would be professional and continue to take on their responsibilities in dealing with the mayor.

Earlier, in the meeting with Dr Sahruddin, the councillors were informed that a committee was formed by the state government to ensure that there was no issue of abuse of power by civil servants in each local government authority.

On May 26, Malay Mail reported that Adib’s move to overturn the decision of the MBIP Licensing Committee meeting on April 18 on the issuing of Ramadan Bazaar permits was seen as an act of sabotage against MBIP councillors and the state government.

Mohd Azam, who was the spokesman at that time, said the councillors had raised the allegations of power abuse because the mayor failed to provide a proper explanation over the matter, which he added could be detrimental to the latter’s credibility, and secondly to ensure such situations do not recur.

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