GEORGE TOWN, Jan 8 — The Penang government is ready to consider taking over the ownership of the iconic ferries in the state if the Penang Port Commission (PPC) and Penang Port Sdn Bhd (PPSB) are willing to gift the ferries to Penang.
State Infrastructure and Transportation Committee chairman, Zairil Khir Johari said the state government would consider taking over the iconic ferry service if the federal government had no plans to continue with it.
The matter was decided at the State Executive Council meeting last Wednesday, he said in a statement, here, today.
“The Penang government fully understands the sentiments of Penangites who are against stopping the iconic ferry service, so to ensure its continuity, we will consider taking over the ownership of the ferries.
“Since the PPC and PPSB have no plans to retain the iconic ferry service as a transportation mode, the Penang government suggests that these ferries be gifted to the state and people,” he said.
Zairil also said that he would liaise with PPC to discuss the state government’s suggestion.
In another development, Chief Minister of Penang Incorporated (CMI) is currently in talks and negotiations with selected operators for the parking areas near Karpal Singh Drive, Crystal Point and in front of The CEO, Bukit Jambul, which was questioned by several parties prior to this.
CMI in a statement said it was further discussing the matter before finalising the terms and conditions for the management of the three parking sites.
“Meanwhile, the public is allowed to use the parking lots for free until the negotiations are completed,” it said.
Several parties including Penang Gerakan also questioned CMI’s action to hand over the management of the parking lots to the private sector.
Its chairman, Oh Tong Keong was quoted as saying that the management of 58 parking bays at Karpal Singh Drive by CMI had been privatised to a company without the knowledge of the people.