DATUK YEO BOON HAI – MAYOR OF KOTA KINABALU
While working on a story for Institution of Engineers Malaysia (Sabah chapter), we had the pleasure to meet up with Yang Bahagia Datuk Yeo Boon Hai, the Mayor of Kota Kinabalu to seek his views and his vision for Kota Kinabalu progress towards being a sustainable city.
BALANCING THE ENVIRONMENT, ECONOMY AND SOCIAL VALUES
Datuk Yeo mentioned that to make the city more sustainable, the role of the local authority is make sure that everyone follows our guideline and the guideline of the town and regional planning department of Sabah and balance it off between planning, administration and the economic and social values.
KOTA KINABALU IS LUCKY TO HAVE GAZETTED PARK AREAS
Kota Kinabalu is very lucky to have a few permanent areas that have been gazetted as a park. Many years ago, the Ministry of Tourism, Environment & Culture was working very hard to convert the likas mangrove swamp into a bird sanctuary. And now this bird sanctuary has been recognised worldwide as an international RAMSAR wetlands where there are only two RAMSAR sites in the city in the world. One is in Japan and one is in Sabah.
AWARD WINNING CYCLING LANES AND PARKS IN MALAYSIA
The Tunku Abdul Rahman Park is beautiful park inside the city which many cities don’t have. We have also created cycling lanes in Kota Kinabalu which is about 32Km now we are going into the phase 3 from Yayasan Sabah to UMS at the mangrove area.
The Tun Fuad Bukit Padang park, it has 152 acres which is a very popular jogging track and we will continue to maintain this as a park for all the people to enjoy.
RECYLE, REDUCE & RE-USE PROGRAMME
We are also very active in the recycle programme. We have campaign on the 3 Rs. RECYCLE, REDUCE & RE-USE. We have about 300 shop premises that have joined our campaign for NO PLASTIC DAY on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Of late, we increased the 3Rs to 3Bs.. which we said locally “ BAWA BEG BAH!” where we are encouraging everyone to reuse, reduce and to bring their own bags when we go shopping. We have also gone to the school to promote clean and green initiatives and we have even given grant to schools to do this programme.
EVERYONE CONTRIBUTED TO MAKE KOTA KINABALU A 5 STARS RATED CITY
While we have tried our best to keep the city clean and liveable, I am glad to share with you all that DBKK now is MSO 9000 certified and all our accounts are up to date and the our Tanjung Lipat Park has been awarded one of the best park in Malaysia by the federal government and I am very thankful to all my staff, to the State Government, especially the Chief Minister Tan Sri Datu Seri Panglima Musa Aman who is our minister in charge of city hall and YB Datuk Yong Oi Fah. DBKK would also like to thank the state secretary who has always been monitoring us, guiding us, Tan Sri Sukarti Wakiman and with the rest of the department as well as our board of advisers, I take this opportunity to thank everybody including the consultants and developers who has one way or the other contributed to Kota Kinabalu City been rated as a 5 Stars City by the Ministry of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government, Malaysia (http://www.kpkt.gov.my).