Red-faced factory bosses shine international spotlight on Ipoh’s terrible roads, drains

By Loghun Kumaran

IPOH, Dec 7 — Over 40 factory owners here are pleading with the Ipoh City Council to fix broken roads and clogged drainage plaguing the IGB international industrial park in Klebang here for the past 25 years.

According to the factory operators, the poor condition of the infrastructure over the years has raised the eyebrows of even visiting foreign investors.

“They come in and question why the roads are so terrible. Huge holes are scattered over the roads causing motorcyclists to crash.

“It reflects poorly on us, because international clients from Japan and China don’t understand why the roads look like this,” said Ahmad Juhaimi Abu Bakar, 58, whose factory manufactures plastics.

On a recent media tour of the IGB industrial park, reporters saw several roads pockmarked with large cracks and deep sinkholes which threaten the safety of drivers and vehicles alike.

The operators of some factories in IGB also said their premises were exposed to flash floods due to the lack of drains, adding that they had to dig into their own pockets to pay for rudimentary ditches to be dug.

Cargo transporting service director AP Logaruben was one such person who has been using his own money to patch up some of the larger holes near his factory.

According to the factory operators, the roads were usable 25 years ago but gradually deteriorated due to a lack of maintenance.

“It became too much, because I lost count of how many lorries broke down or suffered punctures. I spend RM 50,000 every year patching up the road only for it to deteriorate again.

“I also dug a small drain in front of my factory to prevent flooding. We’re fed up and we really want something to be done,” he said.

According to the factory operators, the roads were usable 25 years ago but gradually deteriorated due to a lack of maintenance.

They also claimed that numerous verbal, written and online complaints have been sent to the council over the past three years, with no action taken to date.

Duck processing factory owner Leong Yeow Tuck,72, said the poor road conditions made him concerned for road users’ safety.

“I’ve seen many lorries scraping against the huge potholes on the roads. So many roads are cracked and damaged, and the poor drainage isn’t helping either,” he told reporters during the tour.

“There aren’t enough drains and we keep getting hit by flash floods, the most recent of which happened two weeks ago. Something must be done,” he said.

Malay Mail has contacted the Ipoh City Council for comment and was told checks will be made on the issue before further action is taken.