A cry to preserve our right to a clean environment
I was born and raised here, in Kuantan. I have nowhere to run. I have no option but to plunge myself into the crash of hope and despair when LAMP (the Lynas Advanced Materials Plant) was approved. I vowed I had to protect my home or die trying! Thinking about what we’re up against? It’s the Government! You can’t give up hope just because it’s hopeless. You gotta hope even more, and cover your ears and go bla bla bla.
Experts (chemicals, corrosion science, environmental, radiation) have repeatedly emphasized how harmful the Lynas Advanced Materials Plant is to the environment, humans and animals. Yet, the Pahang Government restlessly sends lobbyists to pursue and to make us adjust to the plant. What about matters of conscience? This isn’t an issue just for Kuantan people but an issue that should matter to all Malaysian citizens.
Long ignoring the lesson of Papan, Bukit Merah in the 90’s, “those who can’t remember the past are condemned to repeat it”? So, why? Repeating the same script? Many years till date, Mitsubishi is still unable to clean up the radiation aftermath of Papan dump-site. 8 leukemia cases within 5 years in a community of 11,000. 7 of the leukemia victims have since died. Now, the government is gambling on another rare earth processing plant.
I have my rights to live in a hazard free environment, I have my rights to protect my home, I have my rights to free air, I have my rights. I told myself, brimming with faith, believing that my government would have heard our cries.
26.02.2012, commemorating the biggest “green” rally in Malaysia, approximately 15,000 people flocking into Kuantan town for the “Himpunan Hijau 2.0” a green assembly to Stop Lynas. The whole nation has risen up, intention voiced out loud and clear, but did the government hear us?
I’m often frustrated that some of my friends are always too terrified to stand up for themselves! What would happen to the country or to society are never a concern for them. I’m rather embarrassed when people were just gossiping about the issue, mostly just talking through one’s hat.
But on 26th February, everything changed: “Stop Lynas!” was chanted ever louder than before! It is the cries of 15,000 people from all around Malaysia! Together, we cried.
I want clean air for my grandchildren.
I want those damned fools to leave the forest alone.
I want the trees to grow, the rivers run free,
and the earth covered with grass.
Stop Lynas my friends! Don’t let the authorities curb your enthusiasm.