Monday, December 28, 2009

This City (Kota Kinabalu) Stinks

Hantu Laut

In better run economies many would have been sacked for incompetence. The couldn't care less attitude have robbed the people of getting the right amenities and clean environment that they rightfully deserved. After having paid for the services through various form of taxes Sabahans are still being short-changed by the lackadaisical attitude and corruptions in the civil service.Even basic necessities such as water and power have become a major problem for the state to deal with.It has become more difficult than rocket science to solve.So it seems.

The high frequency of power outage and water tap running dry have become outrageously shameful. It would have put most administrations to shame but Sabah civil servants seemed immune to shame.

Health care is another major hurdle that this government has been grappling with for many years and instead of getting major improvement it has gotten worse.

My visit to SMC (Sabah Medical Centre, taken over by the government recently) today to see a sick aunt foretells a looming disaster.I can sense inefficiency,incompetence and lackadaisical attitude coming its way.Out of three lifts only one seems to be working this morning.The other two might have been stopped to save electricity or under repair.I am waiting for the day, like in the old QEH (Queen Elizabeth Hospital), for the lift to start shivering before it starts its journey.

Sunset,Tg Aru Beach.Scouring for bi-valves.

A few days ago I took a walk along Tg Aru Beach.I have known this beach since my childhood days when the sand was still pure white and the water pristine. Passing by the first beach I was immediately greeted by the most nauseating smell ever, coming from a nearby drain that discharge its effluents into the sea.One can't imagine how once such pristine environment had been allowed to deteriorate to become appallingly unpleasant to the senses.There are about 6 to 7 of this kind of drains along the whole stretch of the beach between Shangrila Hotel and the airport discharging untreated sewage into the sea. Not only this beach stinks to high heaven almost everywhere else in town one can smell the drains and sewers.

First beach,Tg Aru

Go to the Waterfront in town and order your favourite drink and wait till the tide goes out.You will pick up the same revolting stench.The smell of shit.Next, go to the central market and the new esplanade in town and enjoy the same nasty smell greeting you.A little further a field, drive to Inanam/Kolombong area and the same nasty smell abounds but by than you would have lost your sense of smell.Your olfactory organs have become so used to the scent of shit somehow the shitty smell doesn't bother you anymore.That must be the case with the people at DBKK (Dewan Bandaraya Kota Kinabalu).Their olfactory organs have neutralised the smell of shit.

KK Waterfront

This is a beautiful city that have been ruined by endless supply of morons running it.It could have been the most beautiful city in the whole country. With its pristine beaches,islands,coral reefs and nearby mountains very few city in the world can match this one.A city that can give you 10 minutes boat ride to nearby islands with sandy beaches and crystal clear water and one hour drive to cooler mountain climate and primary forests.

After 46 years of independence, more than anything else, we have done more wrongs to the city.This city should have been expanded on a gridiron system.The old section of the city was built more or less on a grid system.If the urban planners have continued using the same system this small city wouldn't face traffic congestion today.Road construction and traffic flow would have been made easier .Downtown KK is not that big, yet there are traffic congestion most days.

The first to lead the way in bad urban planning was the old Sedco complex at Kampong Air, than came the Segama and Sinsuran complexes.To add insult to injury are the buildings of Api-Api and Asia City.Both are potential future ghettos of KK.Asia City is so badly planned one can easily be driving in a maze here.It would sooner join Bandaran Berjaya as the fleshpot of KK.

The city doesn't have long term environment protection plan.Sewerage and waste water are still allowed to flow to the sea affecting the nearby marine lives and coral reefs. Rightfully, it should by now have a proper and adequate central sewage and waste water treatment and disposal system in place.

The squatter colonies at Pulau Gaya, one of the main contributors of pollutants into the sea should have been resettled many years ago and the land taken over for development that could benefits the city.No politicians dare make the move.They can acquire thousand of acres of land from local landowners and pay peanuts to them for the KKIP (Kota Kinabalu Industrial Park) which has become one big white elephant but have no balls to kick out the illegals from this beautiful island.

Public amenities are still far from satisfactory.Many parts of the city's roads and residential areas still do not have adequate lighting.Public transport and taxis are not readily available and if they do they are bloody expensive.I once took a cab from Terminal 2 to the Kinabalu Yacht Club which is less than five minutes ride costing RM15.00.You can't argue with the cab driver because the fare from airports are set by the government.Those who set the fares have no inkling of some of the distances.It's just a simple case of laziness.

Try driving on the unlit roads and highways at night. The chances of you going off the road or hitting the kerb is pretty high especially on roads you are not familiar with because the road lines that supposed to help you keep on track at night have disappeared ages ago and those responsible to maintain it are fast asleep.

Most amazing is a project which I consider highly dangerous to airline passengers.This is the construction of a fly-over at the end of the KKIA runway.One would have thought there should be free open space at the end of runways in the event of planes overshooting the runway which is not a remote possibility.What were the engineers thinking when they designed the flyover or was it they have no clue that there is a runway right next to it? Shouldn't a tunnel be a better alternative? Even if the area has high water table simple solution of providing pumps would be sufficient as the tunnel is very short.

We are proud to be given the privilege of having the first submarine base here.The Federal government spent hundreds of million to build the base with one serious defect.It is only 1 kilometer away from the busy Sepangar port where all kind of boats and ships ply the waters.Too close for comfort.

Government departments not coordinating with each other is a common occurrence here, that's why it is common to see a newly sealed road dug up again few weeks later by another department.

It has become a vicious circle.


MikeLing said...

Dear Hantu,
The taxi fare from T2 to Tg Aru is now RM25.

SM said...


This is a beautiful city that have been ruined by endless supply of morons running it...

So in the same vein,based on your "Christmas Eve with a new twist" article, I guess you can blame the BN for what is happening in KK?! After all the BN has been running Sabah for ages right?

So again, similarly, Najib should write a book..."BN (or rather UMNO) for Dummies"?!!!!!

See how stupid such reasoning is?!

vinnan said...

Why worry about Sabah? UMNO can always issue more Mykads to the new Filipino and Indon Malay tribes to keep themselves in power. This is what happens when all UMNO cares about is its own power so that UMNO can continue to suck the blood of the people. Flooding Sabah and KK in particular with the fucking Filipinos and Indons without taking into consideration the infrastructure needed to support the hordes of 'Melayu' coming in is a recipe for disaster. But what is there for UMNO to worry about so long as they can create more 'Melayu' voters and fuck the people of Sabah who are too stupid to see that all their woes stem from UMNO's corruption. Perhaps there is some truth to the rumour that even the standards of the marking schemes for the public exams in Sabah are lowered so as to cater for the less intelligent Sabahans. Judging from what you say about having to smell shit in KK, I have to conclude that Sabahans are not less intelligent than other Malaysian. Sabahans are plain stupid for willingly smelling UMNO's shit, literally, day in day out.

Hantu Laut said...

No.I don't blame the BN.I blame the Sabah leaders.Even when it was not under the BN things were the same.

It is not stupid reasoning.Anwar is a proponent of street demonstrations and civil disobedience.That's why those revellers (I am sure they are Pakatan supporters) dare to defy the law and bash up law enforcement personnel.Anwar teaches them this street kind of culture.It's not a stupid reasoning.There are facts.
Anwar, has from his student days advocate this kind of political culture.

I am not disparaging him, I am just stating a fact.

SM said...


"That" sort of celebrationg has been going on for years so don't be so sure they are PR supporters. Being stupid & doing stupid things is not "exclusive" to one group of supporters. I'm sure we can at least agree on that?

Hantu Laut said...

No problem with that.I agree.

Hantu Laut said...

Thanks for the update.

Martin said...

Excellent piece, Hantu Laut, right on the money. It sums up why I'm giving up my Malaysia My 2nd Home visa after eight years here and going back to Europe. When I first came, it was a largish town that had recently acquired unmerited city status. Now...well, there's no way I can improve on your analysis. I wish you all luck with water and power. But if a cable can be stole from the Dewan Rakyat, what hope is there?
Warm regards, and thanks for many an enjoyable article, Oluanpi.

de minimis said...


I weep at the environmental state that you have described. KK is still my favourite Malaysian city. Serious and urgent action needs to be taken on the algae build-up. Progress is no excuse for irresponsible sewerage and environmental management. It is such a shame that this can happen. I better postpone trips to KK until the stench disappears.