KUALA LUMPUR - The Natural Resources and Environment Ministry is seeking another RM40mil (S$15 million) to deepen the Ringlet River and strengthen its embankment, in a bid to prevent future mudslides.
Minister Datuk Seri G. Palanivel said this was in addition to his earlier request for RM40mil to carry out similar works at the Bertam Valley, which was hit by a mudslide on Oct 23 last year.
"I have asked for this amount to be used to deepen the river and plant trees along the banks.
"As an immediate measure, we have moved the victims to safer ground and there are temporary shelters at a community hall," he told reporters at Parliament lobby yesterday.
On Tanah Rata assemblyman Leong Ngah Ngah's statement that the mudslide was due to overdevelopment and land clearing in the area, Palanivel said that was not the case.
"That may have been the case in Bertam Valley, but it is different in Ringlet.
"Here, the main problem is that water runoff from higher ground after heavy rains flow directly into the river instead of the dam," he said.
Palanivel also said the district officer had been asked to relocate some of the residents living along the river bank.
"I am not sure if these people are squatters, but I have discussed with the Land Office to see if they can be relocated to allow us to clear the whole area," he said.