LAST_UPDATESat, 23 Jun 2018 10am

Why The Littering Habits Of PPR Residents Will Never Be Resolved

Without civic consciousness, the problem of throwing rubbish and objects out the window in high-rise buildings will never be solved as no amount of advice will get through to the residents.

Dave Avran, founder of Malaysians Against Rape, Assault and snatcH theft (MARAH), told Malaysian Digest that they are prone to think that it is not their problem anymore once the rubbish is out of their sight.

“Similarly other tenants who stumble upon rubbish near their units would not think twice to toss it downstairs.

“Both are at fault and this attitude has a ripple effect on the community,” he said, while adding that the behaviour will be followed by children who witness it.

However, he said that the situation cannot be wholly blamed on residents as lack of infrastructure such as those available in higher-end apartments and condos also contribute to their behaviour.

This is due to the fact that garbage must be disposed of on the ground floor but most times the elevators do not work and at other times, people would think twice of carrying smelly trash on an elevator with passengers, so the trash goes out the window.

As DBKL is mulling on the best mechanism to deal with this behaviour, Dave relayed that laws are already in place to penalise people who litter in public spaces.

“People who litter in public spaces will be liable under section 47 of the Street, Drainage and Building Act 1974, and can be fined up to RM 500 for their first offence, with a maximum of RM 1000 for subsequent offences.

“Local councils can enforce their by-laws too with fines up to RM2000.

“For strata properties, anyone who dumps their garbage outside of allocated rubbish bins or the common rubbish chamber in the building will be liable of an offence. The Management of the property has the right to impose fines under Regulations 9 and 26, Third Schedule of the Strata Management (Maintenance and Management) Regulations 2015,” he explained.

Although these laws are there to be enforced, Dave said that the solution has to be holistic and long term, which can be achieved through the cooperation between authorities and resident associations.

“We need to work closely with the various enforcement authorities, resident associations and encourage residents to participate in ongoing programmes like educational talks and ‘gotong-royong’ clean-ups for their own benefit,” he concluded, while stating that Singapore is a good example that Malaysians can follow.