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Tuesday, March 31, 2015

New Penang mayor eager to serve her city

Patahiyah Ismail pledges to deliver efficient services based on a result-orientated administration in the new Island City of Penang.
Patahiyah-Ismai_penang_600GOERGE TOWN: Penang Island City Council (MBPP) Mayor Patahiyah Ismail has pledged to deliver efficient services based on a result-orientated administration now that the island’s city status would bring stronger challenges and heavier responsibilities.
She attributed part of the state’s success at attaining city status to the commitment of the former Penang Island Municipal Council (MPPP) workers.
“We must strive to overcome the challenges to succeed by improving and delivering quality and efficient management and services,” she said in her maiden speech as mayor at the City Hall in Esplanade here today.
Patahiyah earlier received her appointment letter as MBPP mayor from Governor Abdul Rahman Abbas at his official residence in Seri Mutiara.
She also received a ‘cokmar’ representing the power of the office and ‘kalung’, the chain of the office, which represented the power of the mayor.
The Yang di-Pertuan Agung Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah gave a royal consent on March 10 to declare the whole of Penang Island a city.
The Agong’s royal decree was handed over to Abdul Rahman this morning by the secretary-general of the Urban Well- Being, Housing and Local Government Ministry, Arpah Abdul Razak.
With the declaration, George Town, which sits on the northern tip of the island, has regained its lost city status after 41 years.
With the elevation, MPPP as well was upgraded to MBPP.
Penang’s capital, George Town was once given city status by a Royal Charter from Queen Elizabeth II on January 1, 1957. However it lost the status in 1974 when the city council was merged with the Penang Rural District Council to establish the Local Government Management Board to govern the whole island.
With the federal enactment of the Local Government Act 1976, the board was replaced with MPPP.
The application of city status for the island was submitted in January 2010 and was approved by the Federal Cabinet last November.
Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said on March 24 that the Agong in his royal decree had declared Penang Island be a city on January 1, 2015.
To commemorate this new status, a series of events have been lined up between March 31 and April 26 apart from City Day celebrations on Saturday, April 4.
MBPP’s jurisdiction encompasses a 305 sq km acreage.
It will set up four new departments to handle landscaping, heritage, enforcement and solid waste management as well as public cleanliness.
Apart from Penang Island, there are 12 other cities in the country, with the biggest being the federal capital, Kuala Lumpur.
Other cities are Alor Setar, Ipoh, Petaling Jaya, Shah Alam, Malacca City, Johor Baru, Kuala Terengganu, Kota Kinabalu, Miri and Kuching.

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