An angry buzz over 'no signal' for cellphones
Tue, Jan 05, 2010
New Straits Times

GEORGE TOWN: Interrupted mobile telecommunications signals in the inner city heritage enclave are driving residents up the wall.

The problem began in August last year after the Penang Island Municipal Council enforcement unit dismantled two telecommunications towers on pre-war houses.

Resident Tan Koon Suan, 29, of Lebuh Kimberley, said he could not make calls on his cellphone from inside his house.

"I don't have a signal in the living room. The signal strength is extremely weak and unreliable in certain spots."

Trader, Chan Chook Siong, 60, said his business had suffered as customers often failed in attempts to contact him.

"My regular customers are going elsewhere as I am always unreachable," he said.

PDC Telecommunation Services Sdn Bhd, the state government arm in charge of installing the tower, said plans were afoot to group all mobile service providers at one tower.

Its chief executive officer, Abd Malek Omar said towers on shophouses had been torn down due to health concerns among residents.

"We are considering putting up a new structure in a strategic location within the area."

He said talks were being held with MPPP and non-governmental organisations to identify a suitable location for the tower.

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