|StarMetro headlines today. Click here to read more.|
I almost choked on my tuna sandwich this morning when I saw this headline. That was just for starters. My eyeballs nearly popped out when I read the report. RM400,000 for a public toilet! That sum can buy a young adult a dream house under the MY FIRST HOME scheme.
|An Automated Street Toilet at a launching ceremony in 2006.|
|The toilet today. Closed for permanent repairs? Honestly, it looks more like a |
RM4000 toilet than a RM400,000 one. That's taxpayers' money truly gone down the loo.
I remember the fanfare that went with the launching of these toilets in 2006. I remember too thinking at the time that it wouldn't be long before one by one these toilets would break down and eventually become public eyesores. Well, my fears have come true in just a short span of barely six years.
What boogles the mind is that each of these Automated Street Toilets (AST) costs a whopping RM400,000. There are 20 of them scattered around the city. That makes a total of RM8 million spent on providing a convenient place for people to pee! Guess who uses these ASTs most? Foreign workers and labourers.
It gets even better. These ASTs are supposed to be high-tech. "The doors are very sensitive," says a spokesman from City Hall's building maintenance department. Probably true. I've seen a foreign labourer banging and kicking the door of an AST in the Kota Raya area in a vain attempt to get it open.
My question is - why go for state-of-the-art toilets when most folks here don't even know how to use the low-tech toilets we currently have in public places?
Something stinks here, and it's not just coming from these toilets. No one will be surprised if these ASTs end up in the next Auditor-General's report.
I was downtown today with my camera. I managed to capture more examples of shoddy maintenance.
|This wheelchair lift at KLCC seems to be either under utilised or permanently under repair. Why?|
|Jalan Sultan in Chinatown after a heavy downpour this afternoon. The surrounding drains were all clogged. No wonder the area is flooded whenever there's heavy rain.|
|TV screens with no pictures. Most of the buses are poorly maintained, with broken plastic seats and ticket machines that often break down.|
|You wouldn't expect to see this at the food court in Mid-Valley, one of the city's premier shopping malls. Not only are both taps not working, the sink doors are held together with cellophane tape!|
|Potential danger. Exposed cables along Jalan Ampang.|